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Friday, March 02, 2007

PNG Prime Minister accuses media of what he termed as "spreading misinformation" on the Moti issue

Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare yesterday accused the media of spreading misinformation about the Moti issue, and not giving much attention to the other side of the story.

He also said the media was not doing enough to expose the connection between former director of National Security Advisory Council Joseph Assaigo and Julian Moti.

“Nobody has given any background to Assaigo’s affiliations with Moti’s family. Nobody has given information how Moti was taken away from international boundary (transit lounge of Jacksons Airport),” he told reporters in a press conference.

“Who gave instructions to police officers to go and issue a warrant of arrest that had no stamp of a court in Australia? These facts were not revealed. These facts were hidden and you guys didn’t make an attempt to go and find out facts before you started reporting and accusing the Government. There’s a lot of misinformation, and it does not help our country. I have a responsibility to 5.5 million people. I’m not here to protect foreigners. I’ve no right to protect a culprit.

“I never wanted Moti to be taken out. This problem belonged to Solomon Islands and Australia to sort out. And you people make a big song and dance about it, taking it as a national issue.

“It’s a shame to your type of journalism, making reports and comments as such.”

Sir Michael Somare also confirmed that he had refused to accept the report from the inquiry presented by chairman Justice Gibbs Salika on Wednesday.

“It was furnished to me; chairman came yesterday; they had the report in front of me but I did not accept the report because in law, if you accept the report, you are an accessory to the fact of the report.”

He said he had asked them to take it back and do it again, giving them another 10 days.

Source: PNG National

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