6 Mar 2012

PNG electoral support group wants an immediate shake-up of Electoral Commission

7:19 pm on 6 March 2012

There are reports in Papua New Guinea that a government body helping ready the country for elections in June wants the urgent removal of the Electoral Commissioner, Andrew Trawen, and a number of his key staff.

The newspaper The National says the report accuses Mr Trawen of poor management, saying this is undermining preparations for the June elections.

Don Wiseman has more:

"The paper says the recommendations to Prime Minister, Peter O'Neill, are from the Government electoral support programme team. The team says soldiers and police should be deployed immediately to the Highlands, with raids to flush out and neutralise a build up of high-powered weapons there. It wants the replacement of the defence secretary and the deputy electoral commissioner (operations), the removal of the election managers in Enga and Southern Highlands and the sacking of headquarters information technology staff. It says all funding for election managers should be immediately released. The report points to poor decision making, makes claims of the misappropriation of funds, a lack of innovation and resistance to change, and for these reasons Mr Trawen should go. And it says the law should be amended so the electoral commissioner serves no longer than five years."