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Prime Minister and Pangu Pati leader, James Marape has denied speculations widely circulating on social media that he has left Pangu.

He said today (March 14 2022) he was quite surprised to see the “fake news” that he announced at a meeting with Hela landowners last Friday night – his Sabbath and at a time when he was mourning the passing of Party stalwart Hon. William Samb – that he was officially and formally distancing himself from Pangu.

“I am not leaving Pangu; Pangu is part of me, I am privileged to be leading the Party at the moment,” PM Marape said.

“This Party gave the country its sovereignty, this Party set up the three arms of government, this Party has shown the road in the formative years of our country’s history.

“Under my leadership, and with other MPs who are behind Pangu, the change of government in May 2019 was not accidental: We deliberately moved into Pangu, knowing that this is the Party that knew the way and showed the way in 1975.

“Pangu Pati will reconstruct the country and lead it to economic wealth and prosperity for our people.”

PM Marape said this was exemplified in Pangu’s flagship ‘Connect PNG’ Programme and others.

“Our ‘Connect PNG’ Programme is opening up rural and forgotten PNG like never before,” he said.

“We are paying school feels for students all the way from elementary level to university level, including our Higher Education Loan Programme (HELP).

“We are paying off the bad and unsustainable debts left behind by Peter O’Neill when he led the country for eight years from 2011 to 2019. We are on the road to economic recovery that should see us posting a surplus Budget in five years.

“We are modernizing our health system with the aim of brand-new hospitals in all provinces, and the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

“We are stepping up support to the judiciary and anti-corruption efforts to protect the wealth of our country.

“These are all things that Pangu wanted to do in 1975, but due to many years of political instability since then, our country has not seen much success.”

PM Marape said Pangu was a historical party that had ties to unity and sovereignty of the country, and was here to stay.

“It is very unfortunate that political opponents – on the eve of the 2022 elections – are making up fake news James Marape is jumping away from Pangu Pati,” he said.

“I am the Leader of Pangu Pati and will lead this great PNG political institution into the 2022 elections, to get the people’s mandate, and entrench PNG on the road Pangu saw in 1975, where no-one is left behind and everyone is given fair and equal opportunities.

“That’s the destination we foresaw in May 2019 when we formed government and are working towards that.

“Our opponents may say that Pangu is ‘history’, however, let me say that history gives one hindsight for the future.

“Pangu is here to stay – there is no Party that has contributed more to the development of the country than Pangu – since 1968 to Self-Government in 1973, and on to Independence in 1975 under Great Grand Chief Sir Michael Thomas Somare.

“Pangu Pati has had the greatest influence on leadership in this country, and my generation of leaders – under Pangu – will reconstruct the country for the better for us to arrive at the economic independence destination.”

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