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ABG President announces Cabinet reshuffle

The Autonomous Bougainville Government has had a major cabinet reshuffle and appointment of new Ministers today.

Three Ministers have been decommissioned with three new appointments to replace them and a reshuffle within cabinet saw several Ministers reassigned to new portfolios.

President Hon Ishmael Toroama in welcoming the new Ministers and announcing the reshuffle said this was the first major reshuffle made in his capacity as the President and chairman of the Bougainville Executive Council (BEC).

He reiterated that during past ministerial reshuffles he had stated that changes in cabinet were required to maintain the confidence and trust our people have in the government to effectively deliver services and to ensure our resolve for an independent Bougainville is not compromised.

“I have said so often that change enables progress and progress is a sign of growth, maturity and independence,” he said.

The new ministers that were sworn in today include Honorable Dennis Lokonai, Member for Bolave Constituency as Minister for Health, Honorable Junior Tumare, Member for Makis Constituency as Minister for Lands, Physical Planning, Environment Conservation and Climate Change and Honorable Robin Wilson, Member for Terra as Minister for Mineral and Energy Resources.

President Toroama welcomed the three new Ministers to the cabinet and called on them to fulfil their new responsibilities with commitment and pragmatic leadership.

He further congratulated the incumbent Ministers of the BEC through the reshuffle who have assumed new portfolios in the BEC and this included Hon. Amanda Masono as the appointed Minister for Public Service, Minister Joseph Mona as the appointed Minister for Technical Services, Minister Hon. Theonilla Matbob as the appointed Minister for Community Government and Minister Hon. Thomas Pata’aku as the appointed Minister for Education.

Toroama stressed that he expected the same commitment and energy that the incumbent Ministers had given to their former ministries in their new portfolios.

The Ministers were reminded that the Toroama/Nisira government has a focal point to introduce reforms and prepare Bougainville for independence and it required innovative and committed leadership at the political level by the respective Ministers of the cabinet to achieve that.

President Toroama reiterated that the six point strategy of his government were the guiding principles in achieving the ultimate goal of making Bougainville independent politically, socially and economically and called on the Ministers to utilize them.

“Every Minister in the Bougainville Executive Council (BEC) is expected to utilize the six point strategy to achieve your respective ministry and departments’ strategic plans and development goals,” he said.

The Six Point Strategy include:

  1. Political control of Bougainville’s Destiny which is independence,
  2. Economic Growth and Control
  3. Administrative Control
  4. Mobilizing Private Sector & Civil Society
  5. Long Term Vision & Planning and
  6. International Relations

The Ministers were reminded that the Six Point Strategy is the basis for Bougainville Government’s prerogative to achieve political independence and at the same time improve the lives of Bougainvilleans through the effective provision of basic services and generating revenue.

He called on the Ministers to work with their Heads of Department who are their foremost advisors in political matters and the collaboration must be based on mutual trust and commitment to serving this government and the people of Bougainville.

Meanwhile President Toroama extended his gratitude to the former Minister for Police and Correctional Services Hon. Thomas Tari Member for South Bougainville Veterans, former Minister for Technical Services Hon. Dr. Joe Kim Suamaru Member for Kopi and the former Minister for Mineral Energy Resources Hon. Rodney Osioco Member for Kokoda for their time and effort as ministers of the Bougainville Executive Council.

“You have served the government loyally in the last three years and I thank you for your service to the government and the people,” Toroama said.

The Cabinet Ministers have been called on to build the human resource capacity through education, improve health services through an effective Bougainville health system, provide infrastructure to improve transportation and the movement of services to create an environment that is conducive and able to sustain growth in Bougainville’s economy and prosperity in the communities.

“These are all very achievable goals if we collaborate effectively at the political and administrative levels of the Autonomous Bougainville Government.”

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