PRIME MINISTERIAL MEDIA RELEASE
Mr O’Neill said there had been problems with every national election since independence, and there were probably problems with pre-independence House of Assembly elections.
"The geography of Papua New Guinea makes service delivery and communications an enormous challenge day on day out. Staging national elections across the country is no different," Mr O'Neill said.
"I thought the overall conduct of the last election was significantly better than the 2007 election, and the 2002 election before that.
"When you have so many candidates, and regional as well as open electorates, the logistics of polling, and counting, are a challenge.
"But I believe that, with Australian government funded support, and the presence of international observers, as well as a free press, and a robust political party process, the election process produced a fair, and democratic, result," he said.
"But there is another important check and balance in the conduct of our elections. The National Court functions as an independent tribunal to hear disputes by unsuccessful candidates - and that process is currently underway," he said.
"We should have confidence in the judicial process to consider, andwhere necessary overturn, election results.
"The fact that the great majority of objections have been dismissed basically confirms that the elections were generally fairly conducted."
Mr O'Neill said he generally applauded and supported the work of Transparency International infighting and exposing corruption and abuse, but he was very disappointed that its claims regarding the conduct of the elections were an exaggeration.