PNG opposition leader calls on lawyer MP to resign over shooting death

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PNG opposition leader Belden Namah
PNG opposition leader Belden Namah ... "a very dangerous and relaxed attitude by ... [Prime Minister] James Marape’s leadership towards the whole issue of firearms, violence and law and order." Image: PNG Post-Courier File

PNG Post-Courier

Papua New Guinea opposition leader Belden Namah has called on a member of Parliament, Lohia Boe Samuel, to resign over the accidental fatal shooting of a man.

In a statement yesterday, Namah weighed in on the restaurant shooting in Waigani which was allegedly an accident and involved Moresby Northwest MP Samuel, a lawyer.

“Accidental or intentional, the leader has been most irresponsible in producing a gun in a public place. Producing a gun and discharging or firing a gun in a public is illegal,” Namah said.

Namah called on Samuel to resign immediately as MP and face the full force of the law as a private citizen.

“The issue here is not that the discharge of the firearm was accidental. The far more important issue which resulted in the fatal shooting is the production of the firearm in a public place.

“That is illegal and Mr Samuel, as a senior lawyer, ought to have known that better,” he said.

Namah said there should be no cover up of this incident, and that Samuel should do the decent thing and resign immediately.

Police urged to lay charges
He also called on the police to do the right thing and bring him to account.

Namah also drew reference to another incident involving senior Pangu Party MP and Minister for Planning Rainbo Paita who was investigated for firing a high-powered firearm.

PNG Post-Courier front page 14032022
The PNG Post-Courier front page report of the shooting … MP Lohia Boe Samuel pictured with Fusion 2, the Waigani restaurant where the incident happened. Image: Post-Courier screenshot APR

Namah said: “Following a so-called ‘high level investigation’ carried out by the Police Commissioner David Manning, Mr Paita was cleared.

“And now we have another of the Prime Minister James Marape’s inner circle of friends involved in a public display of a firearm which endangered the lives of all patrons and staff at a public place resulting in the death of a man.

“Mr Samuel and Mr Paita’s fascination with firearms is not just their own.

“It is indicative of a very dangerous and relaxed attitude by this government under Prime Minister James Marape’s leadership towards the whole issue of firearms, violence and law and order situation in the country,” he said.

Republished with permission.

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