SIR MEKERE CELEBRATES BUDGET AND INTEGRITY BILL SUCCESS IN PNG PARLIAMENT

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PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (December 8, 2000 - The National/PINA Nius Online)---Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Sir Mekere had a double success yesterday. Parliament passed the 2001 Budget and then mustered the required absolute majority need to pass the bill on the Integrity of Political Parties.

The opposition, under Bill Skate, voted with the government to pass the budget and the bill that Mr. Skate said would create a healthy environment for political and economic stability.

Sir Mekere said later it was an historic moment for PNG and thanked every Member of Parliament for supporting the bill.

Earlier in this session of Parliament, Sir Mekere said the door was still open for amendments to the Integrity Bill, which would enhance political stability.

The government was forced to abandon the second reading of the bill last month when a faction of the coalition government led by People's Progress Party leader Michael Nali sought an adjournment of Parliament and Sir Mekere could not muster the required number to move for the reading.

For additional reports from The National, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Newspapers/The National (Papua New Guinea).

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: http://www.pinanius.org 

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