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PNG Elections : Credibility of Sacked NA Ministers Suffering Over Backflips

The Prime Minister,  Peter O’Neill   has expressed concern over 'political backflips' by sacked Ministers in the lead-up to the National Election.

In making the observation on short-sighted political behaviour, the Prime Minister said he hoped candidates would devote more time to serious debate on issues and not focus on cheap-shots that can only hurt those who point fingers.
“In just a few weeks we have seen National Alliance party members abandoning long-held and publicly stated policy positions and claiming that they had not been honest in their public statements while in Government,” the Prime Minister said.

“The former Treasurer has claimed that his financial powers as Treasurer were removed last year and that he did not make this public until after being removed from office.
“He has also suddenly changed his views on the Central Bank, changed his views on economic development in the country and claims that he defied legislation concerning government finance activities.

"These are not the words and actions of a leader, but of a person seeking political opportunity, and selling-out their reputation and credibility.
“Anything that the former Treasurer says now, that he could have said before but failed to do so, demonstrates that he either had no backbone when in Government, or that is just playing politics now.
“During his three years as Treasurer, if he had problems with the advice of the Central Bank, why did no not say so back then?”
The Prime Minister further questioned claims by Patrick Pruaitch that are at odds with the speech to Parliament in November 2017 by the Former Treasurer stating: ‘The Budget demonstrates O’Neill-Dion Government decisiveness to move the Government Debt to GDP ratio onto a sustainable path while supporting development over the medium term.’

“Now the former Minister has discredited his own statement to Parliament.
“Did the former Treasurer mislead the Parliament in his 2017 Budget speech, or is he just playing politics now? He needs to answer this question to the people of the nation.
“The credibility of the former Treasurer is being brought into question with his backflips on policies and advice that he backed over five years in Government and three years as Treasurer.
“The people of the nation accept that Leaders can change the views over time, but not backflip the moment they are removed from office.
“Calmer heads can prevail in the NA party, these policy backflips are hurting their credibility.”
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