21 May 2014

Ben Micah tipped to be new PNG deputy Prime Minister

2:17 pm on 21 May 2014

The leader of Papua New Guinea's New People's Progress Party, Ben Micah, is tipped to become the country's new Deputy Prime Minister as part of a major cabinet reshuffle expected to take place this month.

Mr Micah, who is currently the Public Enterprises and State Investments Minister, is leading a three-way race to replace Leo Dion, the deputy parliamentary leader of the embattled Triumph Heritage Empowerment Party.

The other contenders are Treasury Minister Patrick Pruaitch and Fisheries Minister Mao Zeming.

A well-placed coalition source has told The National newspaper that Prime Minister Peter O'Neill is expected to make major changes to his team on his return from the Australia-PNG Business Forum in Cairns.

The source says Mr O'Neill is expected to replace ministers who are considered fence-sitters and to reduce the size of his coalition.