APEC Security law too harsh: Pruaitch

PORT MORESBY, 24 OCTOBER 2018 (THE NATIONAL/POST COURIER) – Papua New Guinea Opposition leader Patrick Pruaitch says the special security legislation passed for APEC is an indictment on our local police and creates more of a risk to the people and sovereignty of the country.

His comments follows the announcement earlier this month that a new law would be in force for 10 days next month to address any security breach during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Summit.

Apec Minister Justin Tkatchenko announced the APECc Security Act would be in force from Nov 9 to 19 “within the period of the leaders’ summit”.

Tkatchenko said the legislation had “harsher penalties that allow foreign forces and our forces to take total control of the situation”.

Pruaitch questioned what country opened itself up to allow private security personnel and foreign forces to take potshots at its citizens.

He said the Government should have given attention to reforming the police force to today so “we do not have to compromise on our sovereignty by passing such a law”.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill has described a statement issued by the opposition leader Patrick Pruaitch as fake news tailored to mislead the people of Papua New Guinea.

The opposition leader had released a statement saying the O’Neill government has pulled another fast one on the people of Papua New Guinea by ensuring control of all security forces in PNG until January 1, 2020.

“What nonsense is the opposition trying to stir up with misinformation and lies.

“The APEC Safety and Security operation enters a draw-down period after the conclusion of the summit in mid-November and operations will cease by December 1,” O’Neill said in response to the statement.

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