Tuesday, August 7, 2012

"I stand tall with the principles that I believe in" - Namah

Thank you Mr Speaker, before I congratulate my brother and Prime Minister elect of the 9th Parliament, I would like to congratulate yourself for Parliament having confidence in electing you to the highest office in this parliament, being the Parliament Speaker of PNG.

Please convey my congratulations to your family and the people of Finchaffen. On the same token, I would like to pay tribute to Mr. Nape who has held the helm of the Speaker for the last ten (10) years. He has made some unprecedented decisions that kept the country at its toes for the last 10 years.

Firstly Mr Speaker, I want to congratulate the members of parliament who have been re-elected and those newly elected members of parliament. Those who have been elected recently, the challenge has just begun for you for service delivery to our people in the most rural parts of our districts in the country. And those who have been re-elected, I hope you will continue the good work that you started in continuing service delivery to our people who have been suffering for basic services for many years.

I would like to acknowledge two (2) courageous women, the two (2) female parliamentarians who have demonstrated to other women that women can win seats in this predominantly male dominated parliament.

I stand here also to thank the seventeen (17) believers. You believed and stood for what you stand for. You stood on your principles based on what you believe in. You are men of principle and men of integrity. Without you there would be no democracy, vibrant democracy.

There is no such thing as all of us moving to that side. There must be some people on this side so that we provide check and balance in the daily running of our country. I thank you my team.

To my brother and Prime Minister Honourable Peter Oneill, today I stand here proud and I say that in some 366 days ago, to be exact, yesterday you would remember 2nd of August 2011, when we made an unprecedented move invoking section 142 of the constitution to elect you as the Prime Minister. Because we the young leaders believed that we needed change of leadership at the top level. Myself together with brothers Don Polye, William Duma, Sir Puka Temu, Bart Philemon who is not here with us and my Founder and Mentor Sir Mekere Morauta, Sir Julius Chan and not to mention my Deputy Party Leader Sam Basil we stood together in the moment when PNG wanted change. We brought change and installed you as the Prime Minister. I am proud, absolutely proud to make you the Prime Minister of this country.

You know my Prime Minister, ten (10) months has been difficult, from 02nd August up till the elections. We made some unprecedented decisions, decisions that we have made has brought about the impasse, some difficulties, some questions, many of the MPs sitting with you have been leading protests against us. I do not regret, I did everything under the sun to protect you has the Prime Minister.

When there was mutiny in the Defence Force, I went out there to quell the mutiny and brought about peace in the Defence Force. When you were caught at the government house by members of the police force sponsored by Somare, Michael Thomas Somare, I went in the night to rescue you. I stood through thick and thin for you because I believed in change, that change I still believe in.

You also know I went I as far as going into the Chief Justice’s chambers because I wanted to protect you, me and the government that we formed by invoking section 142 of the constitution. Today my Prime Minister, I clearly hear the new Member for Sinesine Yongumul as saying criminal, but that was what we did. And Prime Minister, that only reflects that you must not trust those people who are with you right now in that camp.

I want to say sorry to the people of this country, for anything I may have done wrong as the Deputy Prime Minister in the then Oneill/Namah government. I want to also, on this Floor of Parliament apologize to the Chief Justice of the country. You know it is very difficult for someone to apologize but as a Leader of this country, I stand tall with the principles that I believe in, even though some people may say criminal, they are already here in parliament with us and I am afraid they might charge you for criminal as well.

Mr Speaker, I want to leave my Prime Minister and the Prime Minister of this country with a bit of caution. But before that, I want to say this; Prime Minister I did not vote for you today, basically because you did not need my vote as you had mustered the numbers required to be elected the Prime Minister of this country, and also based on my moral and ethical principle. I had to vote against you because that is the way I chose and that’s the way leaders should do in this country, you must stand firm and make bold decisions.

Mr Speaker, in my short stint parliament, this is my second term in parliament, I learnt one thing and I will never forget, never trust anyone of your brother members of parliament. Only trust your heart. And that’s the biggest lesson I have learnt and I will always keep it in my heart. My Prime Minister, my only caution to you my brother and Prime Minister is this; please do not trust those who are with you right now – they have spoken publicly, they have made public statements in campaigns that they will put both of us in jail and throw the keys away in the Laloki River, and they will forget about both of us. Take this word today. Do not regret that, it will really happen to you in the next coming months.

I hope and pray that your marriage of convenience will last for five (5) years. As both you and I know it is very difficult to feed every mouth and to please every heart.

I will provide a vibrant opposition with my team for this country. Let me assure the people of this country, we will fight against corruption, we will fight it without fear or favor and we will fight it because we love our country Papua New Guinea.

I wish you all the best of luck, and I look forward to a mutual working relationship between yourself as the Prime Minister and in the next couple of days when we elect the new Opposition Leader, I believe we will form very good governance in PNG.

But let me say this to everyone; that Papua New Guinea needs change and it has been demonstrated in the outcome of this election. That 69 percent are new members of parliament and only 31 percent are re-elected members of parliament. But let me also conclude here by saying and putting on record that when we went out for elections this year, the outcome is the worst election since Independence. I see the Electoral Commissioner as the most disorganized administrator of elections in this country. Apart from boosting of the much logistical support and so-called advice from the friends in Australia, I believe most of the elections have failed and you will see that in the outcome of the court of disputed returns.

My Prime Minister, I want to congratulate you and I believe you will lead this country. And let me remind you again, please do not trust those friends who are with you, they coming there with butcher knives to butch you!

BELDEN NAMAH
Leader of Opposition