24 Dec 2004

PNG minister affirms commitment to deal struck with Australia

4:34 pm on 24 December 2004

Papua New Guinea's internal security minister, Bire Kimisopa, says there is political will to act if the Supreme Court rules that the co-operation pact with Australia is unconstitutional.

Mr Kimisopa says there is unanimous support that the arrangements of the so called Enhanced Co-operation Programme need to be progressed.

The Post Courier newspaper reports that parliament will convene on February the 15th and the Supreme Court decision will most probably be handed down in March.

The Morobe provincial executive is querying the constitutional validity of the law, which has now resulted in Australian police and public officials working within the PNG policing, government and justice sectors.

The Morobe officials say the ECP breaches several rights and freedoms guaranteed to all PNG citizens by the National Constitution.