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WEST NEW BRITAIN
Sasindran Muthuvel (West New Britain, Coalition for Reform) is PNG’s first ethnic Indian MP. The naturalized PNG citizen will also become governor of the province. He is well-known in the province as owner of Hamamas Trading Ltd, which was established in 1991 and employs around 150 people. Hamamas specialises in retail and wholesale merchandise, hardware, whitegoods and groceries.
Joseph Lelang (Kandrian-Gloucester, leader Coalition for Reform) was secretary for National Planning. Early last year he was suspended after falling out with a group of senior ministers after, on his own admission, he unlawfully distributed hundreds of millions of kina from national development funds. This was allegedly done on the orders of Arthur Somare, Patrick Pruaitch, Paul Tiensten, Peter O’Neill and Michael Somare. Within a short time, Leland was back in his old job, the spat apparently over. Earlier this year he launched the Coalition for Reform Party at Port Moresby’s Dynasty Restaurant saying: “The CRP represents a group of political reformists, who are not satisfied with the fact that not only do the country’s rural and urban problems continue to persist but they have also gone [from] bad to worse. As a group of reformists, this party believes that we need to think deeply about how we can manage our country and its resources. We need to identify a development path and develop sets of policies, strategies and programs that will enable PNG to develop consistently. And the CRP wants to present to this country likeminded leaders who can think this way.”
Francis Marus (Talasea, PNG Party) was born in East Sepik, but was raised in WNB. He was a businessman before entering politics. He first contested the Talasea seat in 2002 but was defeated by independent John Vulupundi. He again contested in 2007, defeating Vulupundi.
Joe Lera (Bougainville, United Resources Party) was the former Commissioner for South Bougainville in the Bougainville administration. He defeated sitting member Fidelis Semoso, recently found guilty of misappropriating K2.7 million in public funds by a supreme court judge. Earlier in his career he was director of the Buka Open Campus and an associate director of the University of Papua New Guinea Open College.
Jimmy Mingtoro (Central Bougainville, People’s National Congress) is the sitting member and Minister for Communications and Information. The Meekamui Government of Unity and Panguna Landowners Association named candidates who gave large sums of money to lure the people to vote for them.
Lauta Atoi (North Bougainville, People’s National Congress), the sitting member, is a businessman of mixed Mortlock and Tasman parentage. He narrowly defeated Rachael Konaka, the only female candidate in the seat.
Steven Pirika Kamma (South Bougainville, United Resources Party) is the incumbent member and Minister for Bougainville Affairs.