PNG TELIKOM BOARD SACKED

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PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, Dec. 7) – The entire board of Telikom PNG Ltd has been sacked.

It is understood that Public Enterprises Minister Dr Puka Temu took the action last Friday over the board’s antagonistic stand on its proposed partial sale of Telikom to the South African-based Econet Wireless.

Independent Public Business Corporation Managing Director Masket Iangalio has been appointed chairman of Telikom, replacing lawyer Dr Florian Gubon.

Also appointed to the board are acting Treasury Secretary Simon Tosali, and a senior officer from the Attorney General’s office.

Acting Managing director of Telikom Martin Veisame is not affected in the changes, and remains in his position.

Sources said the action was taken because of the defiant action of the board through newspaper advertisements and its decision to commence court action to stop the partial privatisation process.

The sources said the sacking, which is understood to have been gazetted, occurred last Friday.

"It is inconceivable that an arm of the government should take the government to court," the source said.

Finance and Treasury Minister Bart Philemon told journalists in Sydney on Monday that Cabinet would meet the week after next to decide on the partial sale of Telikom, having already deliberated on the subject.

The Telikom Board led by Dr Gubon has filed a court action to halt the sale of Telikom, and to restrain any action that might be taken to sack them. That case has not been heard, and may be discontinued by the new board chaired by Mr Iangalio.

The sources said the sacking, which is understood to have been gazetted, occurred last Friday.

"It is inconceivable that an arm of the government should take the government to court," the source said.

Finance and Treasury Minister Bart Philemon told journalists in Sydney on Monday that Cabinet would meet the week after next to decide on the partial sale of Telikom, having already deliberated on the subject.

The Telikom Board led by Dr Gubon has filed a court action to halt the sale of Telikom, and to restrain any action that might be taken to sack them.

That case has not been heard, and may be discontinued by the new board chaired by Mr Iangalio.

December 8, 20094

The National: www.thenational.com.pg/

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