AFTER A WEEK of
political turmoil at home, Sir Michael Somare travelled to
The meeting was called to replace the planned Melanesian Spearhead Group Leaders' meeting. This was postponed after other member nations raised concerns about Fij's military backed leader, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, taking on the rotating chairmanship.
Many Pacific heads of state have shunned the
Earlier today Sir Michael spoke with the ABC's Philippa McDonald...
SIR MICHAEL SOMARE: Well, there's always a comment about
PNG politics, very volatile, but I've managed the stage from time to time. Many
a times I have made vote of no confidences in my past being prime minister, so
my body is getting used to it, so I have got a thick skin.
PHILIPPA MCDONALD: How confident are you that you will still be prime minister when parliament resumes in November?
SOMARE: I am still quite confident that we will carry through, I think I have got the numbers with me and I don't see, the Coalition partners have made firm commitments and our numbers still will carry in after November.
MCDONALD: You say you've got the numbers. It was not that parliament was adjourning, you've still got the numbers?
SOMARE: Oh we have the numbers, but I think parliament became very volatile, but following the rules of standing parliament, so speaker decided that he has to adjourn the parliament.
MCDONALD: Sir Michael, it's been reported that you became a little volatile and said to one of your opponents, I will kill you?
SOMARE: Well, in I said it to him in Pidgin and let's get our facts right, because the member concerned did not say something which is very rude and I can't say it on radio.
MCDONALD: Or TV?
SOMARE: Or TV and it hurts and it would hit the other members, if they heard it, it would not have been very good. One is to stop it and I happen to be around when I heard it and I told him you're dead meat, if you repeat it again, your dead meat. Now that dead meat means, you virtually use violence and kill people and I used it in Pidgin about the killing you.
I have used that to Mekere Morauta, in former translation, I will meet you in the post and you'll be gone and that's the way I did look at it. I told him in Pidgin exactly the same. Don't take it literally.
This is a Pidgin you use. Pidgin has got many
ways of using it and by that I mean I will kill him in the polls and that is
exactly the same term I used. And people who have come in the past when every
time are rude, I have got rid of them and I am notorious for these type of
MCDONALD: Sir Michael, there is a fire still burning brightly. Do you want to be prime minister of
SOMARE: No, I think I have done my 42 years. By then I am sure that 44 years and my political career, I decided politics, I decided to leave teaching, it's the best profession, noble profession, but I thought I going to a dirty profession which is politics and I have mastered it, I have doctored it and I believe time has come for me to throw in my towel.
MCDONALD: You call it a dirty profession. Have you had to play dirty?
SOMARE: No, I don't play dirty. I follow the rules in the standing orders of parliament and I have been doing that all right through. Every time I beat people on the floor of parliament, to take their colours, they don't understand how to conduct the processes of parliament and having such a vast experience around, advise the speaker from time to time, this is how the rules are and I have made a success of it.
Source: Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Tomorrow: Why PNG
supports an undemocratic