7 May 2010

PNG's Somare asked to stand aside over controversies

3:06 pm on 7 May 2010

There's a call in Papua New Guinea for the prime minister, Sir Michael Somare, and ministers accused of corruption to step aside and allow investigations to proceed.

The Post Courier newspaper reports the call has come from the Peoples' Progress Party, which is headed by a former prime minister, Sir Julius Chan.

The party says Sir Michael and his government face criticism over the Julian Moti Affair, the controversial amendments to the powers of the Ombudsman, and claims about links between some cabinet ministers and the accused bank robber, William Kapris.

The party says the reaction by the ruling National Alliance Party and its coalition members to the Moti report and the amendments to remove the powers of the Ombudsman Commission are acts of tyranny.

It says if Sir Julius was man enough to step aside and allow two commissions of inquiry to investigate him, then Sir Michael, as a father of the nation, must do likewise.