4 Jul 2012

Preliminary vote counts in PNG released for some seats

4:28 am on 4 July 2012

Preliminary vote counts have been released for some seats in two provinces that have completed polling in Papua New Guinea's General Election.

Counting is underway in the newly created Hela province and neighbouring Southern Highlands province.

The winner of Southern Highlands' Ialibu-Pangia Open seat is the first final result known.

The caretaker Prime Minister Peter O'Neill won the seat with a huge majority on first vote counts.

Under PNG's Limited Preferential Voting System, most seats are expected to be decided on second and third preferences.

In the ten seats where counting has started, Mr O'Neill's People's National Congress Party leads in three seats while independents lead in five.