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ABG Acting Chief Secretary announces key interventions

The Bougainville Administration has been tasked towards creating the enabling environment for institutional transformation under the leadership of the recently appointed Acting Chief Secretary Kearnneth Nanei.

In response to the President’s statements to Mr. Nanei at the Swearing in and last week’s Parliament meeting, the acting Chief Secretary has outlined key interventions aimed at instilling strong and vibrant leadership within the ABG Administration.

"Over the next six months, I am tasked with providing dynamic leadership to the ABG Administration," Mr. Nanei stated.

"To achieve this, the Chief Secretary's office will provide direct visibility and direct oversight, implementing an all-of-government approach towards implementing key government programs and priorities."

These interventions include:

The establishment of an Inter-Agency Economic Intervention Committee, to drive key institutional reforms through formulation of relevant policy and legislation to lay the groundwork towards Bougainville's economic foundation.

This includes strengthening and revitalizing the Bougainville Tax Office, establishing an ABG Treasury Department for ABG’s fiscal management and creating a Bougainville investment registry entity to register, promote and regulate the business industry.

“This Inter-Agency Economic Intervention Committee will scope out a final plan to go before the Bougainville Executive Council for endorsement. Once endorsed, the Interagency will be tasked to implement and achieve these key institutional reforms to ensure we anchor our economy on Bougainville,” Nanei explained.

Under the ABG’s legislative development program, the Chief Secretary's office will coordinate and oversee legislative development within the ABG, ensuring key milestones are achieved in delivering desired legislative outcomes.

“A legislative program will be forthcoming and will be a collaborative effort with the ABG’s Bougainville Independence Mission Advisory Team.”

Speaking on key tasks under the Department of Primary Industries, Mr Nanei said that DPI is expected to operationalize the Bougainville Commodities Regulation Act (BACRA) by having the Bougainville Commodities Advisory Council established to issue various cocoa licenses and charge levies and other charges in Bougainville.  

Another key directive for the Bougainville Administration is on the Panguna Mine redevelopment. With the renewal of BCL's exploration license over Panguna Mine, an ABG interagency committee has been established to address all legacy issues, including mapping out crisis-related issues and other outstanding matters related to the mine.

In line with this, Mr Nanei said that a key task this year for the Administration will be to strengthen government visibility and accessibility in Arawa Town. Mr Nanei further stated that there will also be targeted focus on regional urban township development happening concurrently.

“While the decision on the capital remains with parliament, the administration will also focus on developing regional urban townships and district growth centers like Wakunai, Tinputz, Torokina, Kunua, Bana and Siwai to accommodate growth and development.”

Mr Nanei remarked that over the last five years, Buka and Kokopau towns have seen significant growth at the hard work of private citizens.

“Most of the growth and development happening at the outskirts of Buka and Kokopau have no urban development plans. In light of this, the Lands Department is tasked with planning to free up land for the increasing growth of Buka and Kokopau towns, ensuring proper urban development plans are in place.”

Speaking on personnel matters within the public service, Mr Nanei directed all Department heads to ensure they institute disciplinary actions against officers who misbehave or cause disrepute to the ABG.

“Where disciplinary action is warranted, do not wait to be told, it is incumbent on HODs to institute immediately,” Nanei said. 

Additionally, total visibility of departmental financial expenditures is required to prevent fraud and any illicit procurement across all government departments.

“Where officers are caught in colluding with claimants to defraud the ABG, illegal siphoning of government funds and milking the ABG as a cash cow, they will be dealt with accordingly and ultimately terminated. This also applies to officers who uses government assets for private purpose and bill the government from the work they do whilst being on government payroll. If this is detected in the administration, those responsible will be dealt accordingly,” he warned.

Mr Nanei further tasked the Government media to ensure reporting on government programs are done accurately across all media platforms, ensuring that the government’s political agenda is effectively communicated within and outside of Bougainville.

“The power of communication must now come into play to inform, educate and raise awareness on everything the government is doing,” he said.

These initiatives underline the ABG's commitment to fostering strong leadership, economic development, and effective governance for the benefit of all Bougainvilleans moving forward.

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