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Mendi town burns as Kobol's Election petition dismissed

Photo top-left , Air Niugini Dash 8 Aircraft burns, top -right: Governor
Powi's residential building in flames . bottom: ruins of the burnt aircraft
Photos by : Levngstone Levengo 
Several buildings including, court houses, education office, health office and  an Air Niugini Dash 8 aircraft have been set alight in the Southern Highlands Provincial Capital Mendi, when  disgruntled supporters of election petitioner Joseph Kobol heard about the dismissal of the election petition  by the National Court.

The National Court  dismissed Joseph Kobol’s petition, disputing William Powi’s declaration of 27 September 2017 as the Southern Highlands Governor.

A case of “premature declaration” under “special circumstances,” Joseph Kobol, one of the two petitioners in this seat filed the petition, asking the court to void Powi’s declaration and allow the scrutiny process to be completed with the candidate who gains absolute majority to be declared.

Two objection motions were filed by Powi and the Electoral Commission challenging the competency of Kobol’s petition.

National Court today dismissed the petition because Kobol’s reliefs sought were not under section 212 of the Organic Law.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Peter O'Neill and his cabinet  will convene a meeting tommorrow (Friday) to declare state-of-emergency in the Province.

Air Niugini has  suspended flights to Mendi, Tari and Wapenamanda indefinitely.

...more to come..

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