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Bougainville’s referendum show hits the road

Kaybing - John Momis
President John Momis at the referendum roadshow


BUKA - The Autonomous Bougainville Government’s referendum roadshow kicked off last week as leaders gathered to address people in the former provincial capital of Arawa.

The roadshow is an initiative of the United Nations in conjunction with the ABG with the objective to meeting with key stakeholders in the three regions of Bougainville with the underpinning key message – ‘Peace by peaceful means, unity and rule of law’.

It will also give leaders the opportunity to inform and engage with the people enabling referendum related activities to be widely discussed.

The main members of the roadshow were president John Momis, Bougainville affairs minister William Samb, peace agreement minister Albert Punghau and UN resident coordinator Gianluca Rampolla.

They were accompanied by the ABG house of representatives Speaker Simon Pentanu, members of the Bougainville Referendum Commission as well as several leaders from Central Bougainville.

Kaybing - Gloomy faces at the referndum roadshow
People displaying a serious demeanour as the roadshow kicks off in Arawa

“Our focus is to ensure that our people are aware of the choices we will make during the referendum vote in October,” Dr Momis said.

“We must understand the choices being offered - Greater Autonomy or Independence - which will be defined so our people can make an informed choice.”

Dr Momis said this must be done in a democratic way where the process has integrity so the conduct of the referendum meets international best practice.

The roadshow is travelling to parts of south and north Bougainville culminating in the delegation addressing the Bougainville House of Representatives later this week.


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