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■ The sea of tributes and condolences from all corners of PNG indicates late DPM Basil is a rural development champion.



The late Deputy Prime Minister and Bulolo MP, Sam Basil was a champion of rural development who was much loved by the people of his district, Morobe and entire Papua New Guinea.

Prime Minister, James Marape said this yesterday when speaking at the State Funeral in Port Moresby.

He said this was evident in the outpouring of grief from all over the country, and the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, since the death of Hon. Basil in a tragic road accident along the Bulolo Highway in Morobe last Wednesday (May 18 2022).

He thanked Hon. Basil’s family, people of Bulolo and Morobe for returning him without fail over the last 15 years, to also serve PNG.

“The Hon. Basil was a strong leader who did things his own way,” he said.

“Like many of us, who have emerged from the rural hinterland of our country, our upbringings have always caused us to fight for our rural people.

The Hon. Basil was the epitome of such leadership: No wonder why the Wau and Bulolo people have been closest to his heart, and they have also been keeping him close to their hearts.

“Indeed, the Hon. Basil’s upbringing in rural areas, has in every way shaped and formed his leadership. He worked tirelessly for our country.

“A special forte – which branded him and this generation of leadership – is to share development not only among the urban few but also among the rural majority.

“That is where the Hon. Basil came from, that is where I came from.

“He was relentless in his drive to ensure that political impediments did not get in the way of doing what must be done for our people.”

PM Marape said Hon. Basil was an exceptional MP, having serving his Bulolo electorate with distinction for three, unbroken terms.

“In the 15 years of his service to our country, as an MP, he rose through the Opposition ranks to be Deputy Opposition Leader, and he also rose through the Government ranks to become Deputy Prime Minister.

“Only a few in PNG politics can claim to have achieved these benchmarks.

“He became leader of Pangu Pati and paved the way for me, after the left the party, for me to become leader after (Morobe Governor) Ginson Saonu.”

PM Marape said late Basil was one of five MPs from 2007 including NCD Governor, Powes Parkop, Opposition Leader, Belden Namah, Alotau MP, Charles Abel and himself as Tari-Pori MP.


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