PNG Supreme Court dismisses challenge to Marape’s election

PM James Marape
Prime Minister James Marape ... position upheld by unanimous judges' ruling. Image: RNZ/PNG PM Media

By RNZ Pacific

Papua New Guinea’s Supreme Court has dismissed a legal challenge over the election of James Marape as prime minister last year.

The challenge by Opposition Leader Belden Namah related to alleged irregularities in the parliamentary election 18 months ago.

During the May 2019 session, after resigning as prime minister, Peter O’Neill was re-nominated among the candidates for the vote in Parliament.

However, shortly before the vote he withdrew his candidature, and James Marape was elected as prime minister.

Later, the opposition leader at the time, Patrick Pruaitch, sought the court’s ruling on whether O’Neill’s withdrawal was constitutional.

Namah subsequently took over as opposition leader and pursued the same case.

A five-man Supreme Court bench today ruled against the challenge, upholding Marape’s position as prime minister.

The five judges were unanimous in dismissing the challenge.

This article is republished by the Pacific Media Centre under a partnership agreement with RNZ.

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