10 Nov 2009

Corruption a key reason for PNG anti-asian violence, says MP

10:07 pm on 10 November 2009

The head of a public inquiry into last May's anti-Asian riots in Papua New Guinea says widespread corruption seems at the forefront of reasons for the violence.

Anti-Chinese protests were followed by ransacking of Chinese-owned stores first in Port Moresby, closely followed by Lae, and then in the Highlands, causing at least three deaths.

A cross section of the community is to speak before the committee that's made up of 15 members of parliament.

A union, the immigration and labour department, the police and others have already appeared before the inquiry.

MP Jamie Maxtone-Graham says the issue is a ticking time bomb.

"In our findings we're beginning to see the picture very clearly that our state institutions have completely broken down in terms of their role and function and the ability to carry out their duties. It's coming back to good governance and corruption. They all agree that corruption is a big problem."

Jamie Maxtone-Graham