3 Oct 2002

PNG trade unions blame the previous Morauta government for the VAT fiasco

6:26 pm on 3 October 2002

Trade Unions in Papua New Guinea have blamed the previous Morauta government for the fiasco created by the Supreme Court's invalidation of the Value-Added Tax or VAT.

The PNG Trade Union Congress general secretary, John Paska, says they had considered taking the government to court on the same grounds on which Morobe governor Luther Wenge based his case.

Mr Paska says the TUC has the view that the Morauta government must take full blame for the situation.

He says it is a carbon copy of the national elections debacle.

Meanwhile the Inter-Government Relations minister Sir Peter Barter says parliament maybe recalled early to deal with the constitutional crisis resulting from the VAT decision.

Sir Peter says it is not time to be shifting blame or celebrating victory as it was a serious national issue.

The prime minister, Sir Michael Somare, also says his government is taking responsibility to deal with the VAT crisis and he will not point fingers or blame past governments for the problem.

The Government has indicated it is gtrying to get a stay order on the Supreme Court decision.