MEDIA STATEMENT

Tuesday 14 MAY 2019

The Shadow Attorney General and Member for Sinasina Yonggomugl, Kerenga Kua reminded members of parliament that self-interest and greed spawned during O’Neill’s seven-year reign has impoverished Papua New Guineans therefore as representatives of our people we should not be protecting one man’s interest.

Mr Kua said, “The glaring example is the UBS loan. Papua New Guinea did not need to buy back shares in Oil Search because there was no debt at the close of the IPIC deal. We successfully under the Somare Government relinquished our Oil Search shares to IPIC in exchange for USD 1.681 billion to acquire 19.6 per cent interest in the PNGLNG project. It meant instead of collecting a dividend through our 17.6 per cent interest in Oil Search shares of around PGK40 million annually, we could now receive 70 times more revenue through this swap. As an example, we received around USD547 million in 2016 into our revenue stream from our share component alone in the PNGLNG project and this sum excludes what we further receive in taxes. Please refer to the attached KPHL annual report (page 64) of 2017 because it shows a further increase to USD679 million in that year.

“We all know what a liar Peter O’Neill is and he has muddied the waters so much that many of our people are confused as to what is the truth. We cannot have a person who perpetually lies and misleads us running our country. Nor should we have people that represent our interest in the electorates propping up this kind of person. We as representatives of our people should make it our duty to know the truth so we can be in a better position to help our people. To follow a person whose self-interest and greed comes first is a travesty and you are therefore misrepresenting the true interest of your people.

“May I remind members of parliament that despite the ‘big talk’ the O’Neill government has not been able to implement ANY major project like the Somare Government’s PNGLNG project with such a huge return in revenue! But O’Neill has been able to spend BIG, resulting in the innumerable loans from China. Sadly, his only recourse has been to blame Somare at every opportunity.

“The other loans that Prime Minister O’Neill has managed to obtain that he bragged about in parliament last week comes at a high interest rate and cost to our country. Anyone would be gladly willing to give us a loan if the interest rate on the repayment is profitable for the lender.

“The good economic performance that PNG experienced between 2004 and 2014 is but a memory of where Papua New Guinea could have been today.

“People of Papua New Guinea your future is in the hands of your members of parliament that are protecting one man. I appeal to you to use your democratic and constitutional power to protest to your members of parliament to move away from this tyrant so we can salvage the economy of our country and improve the lives of our people.

“Lastly, I remind members of parliament in the Crown Hotel Camp that in the same way many members of PNC lost in 2017, those who remain with Peter O’Neill will face the same fate in 2022 because you have disrespected and misrepresented your people in the electorates.

Kerenga Kua MP
Shadow Attorney General
& Minister for Justice & Attorney General