Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Potape reinstated

PRIME Minister Sir Michael Somare has gone a full circle by appointing Komo-Margarima MP Francis Potape as the minister assisting the prime minister on climate change and LNG matters only weeks after stripping him of these functions, The National reports.

Documents furnished to The National seemed to suggest the prime minister had a change of heart last Friday to reinstate Potape the powers.

Two weeks ago, Sir Michael removed Potape’s ministerial powers days before leaving for the United Nations meeting in New York.

Potape had claimed that the documents for his removal were forged but the government printing office, which produced the gazettal documents, said the signature of the prime minister were authentic.

It seemed the prime minister did strip Potape of those powers, because he (Somare) had signed new instruments to reinstate him.

Copies of the instruments No: S1 245/2010 and National Gazette No: G239, dated Oct 11, 2010, obtained by The National, revealed that Potape’s responsibilities included the powers and matters related to:

* Liquefied natural gas and independent issues arising;

* Office and functions of climate change;

* Medium-term development goals;

* State protocols and ceremonies;

* Parliamentary services;

* Extractive industries including landowner development issues; and

* Other duties and powers as delegated from time to time by the prime minister.

The prime minister’s office and the media unit could not be reached for comments.



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