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More than 1000 Bougainvilleans in Port Moresby registered their names in order to vote in the coming Referendum for Independence in October during the Bougainville Day celebrations over the weekend.
The Referendum Committee used the June 15 annual celebrations in Port Moresby to allow Port Moresby based Bougainvilleans to register their names for the Bougainville Elections electoral roll.
The registration coincided with the annual celebrations at the Sir John Guise Stadium which saw more than 10,000 people turn up, more than 100 stalls and plenty traditional dances from central, south, north and the Atolls displayed.
A BRC director, Robert Igara, addressed the occasion and spoke about the Bougainville Referendum timeline, and information for the non-resident Bougainvilleans in PNG.
Enrolment awareness is now being carried out throughout PNG from June 12 to 25. Face to face enrolment through PNGEC provincial offices will continue from June 15 to July 1, and the preliminary referendum roll display will be in early August.
The issue of writ, closing of new enrolments and transfer will be on August 16, while the polling schedule display will be in early September while the registration of interest groups closes early October.
Polling period starts October 12, counting will commence after two weeks and results and declaration and return of writ will be in early November.
The petition period – 40 days following the return of writs for all Bougainvilleans and then voting in Parliament.
Coupled with the awareness that was carried out at the stadium together with the celebrations, a daunting but emotional drama depicting the Bougainville crisis was staged –by the students in Port Moresby – of how it was really played out during the 1989 Bougainville war which saw death, wailing mothers and many more.
SOURCE: POST COURIER/PACNEWS
Pacific Islands News Association
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