DP2017/2 The Creation of Two New Provinces in Papua New Guinea — A Story of False Starts and Near Fatal Collisions

SSGM Discussion Paper

Author/s (editor/s):

Manasupe Zurenuoc, Felicity Herbert

Publication year:

2017

Publication type:

Discussion paper

Sir Manasupe Zurenuoc OBE Kt made an enor­mous contribution to Papua New Guinea. During his career in public service he touched many lives and will be fondly remembered. Sir Manasupe was deeply committed to the establishment of the new Provinces and celebrated with the people of Hela and Jiwaka when the new Provinces came into effect. Just as he did, I am sure he would want you all to enjoy the high and lows and the great characters that contrib­uted to the creation of the new Provinces.

Felicity Herbert

The creation of two new provinces, Hela and Jiwaka, in 2012 will be remembered as a great event in the political history of Papua New Guinea. However, like all great events it had many false starts and some near fatal collisions. The period from 2010 to 2012 held exciting times for Papua New Guinea. There was an unprecedented political impasse between Sir Michael Somare and Hon Peter O’Neill, attempts were made to remove provincial electorates and Exxon Mobil was preparing to invest heavily in a gas pipeline and processing plant. This discussion paper will attempt to provide some insight into some of these events and consider why after 36 years the dreams of the Hela and Jiwaka people were finally fulfilled.

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