Tuesday, 23 May 2017

PNG Labour and Industrial Relations secretary suspended over claims of 'influx of foreigners' in the country


LABOUR and Industrial Relations Secretary Mary Morola has been suspended pending investigations into allegations relating to the “influx of foreigners” into the country.

Department of Personnel Management Secretary John Kali told The National yesterday that Cabinet had made a decision on May 3 to suspend Morola.

George Bopi, the chief of staff at the Office of Prime Minister and NEC, has been appointed acting Labour secretary pending the investigation, Kali said.

Kali will lead the Government team investigating the allegations. Members will be drawn from the Department of Justice and Attorney-General, Finance and other central agencies.

Kali said the Government had been concerned about the “influx of foreigners into the country, foreigners who were unqualified, do not speak English and were doing jobs that Papua New Guineans should be doing, jobs reserved for Papua New Guineans”.

“The Government was very concerned about that and gave the Minister for Labour Benjamin Poponawa the opportunity to relay those allegations to the secretary (Morola).”

Based on that, she has now been suspended,” Kali said.
He said the suspension would be for about three months, “but the quicker the better”.

Morola, pictured, was appointed acting secretary to the department in 2015 and officially confirmed in February last year.

Attempts yesterday to get a comment from Morola were unsuccessful.

Kali said the appointment of Bopi as acting secretary was because they needed someone from outside the department.

“The reasoning being that a lot of senior officers in the department may be implicated,” Kali said.

“We needed to get someone from outside the department but also someone who is highly qualified to manage the department during the period of her suspension.”

He said the allegations were public knowledge because they had been raised in Parliament during question by MPs and others.

“The prime minister (Peter O’Neill) was questioned a lot of times about the influx of foreigners,” Kali said.

“The minister for Labour also expressed disappointment about the number of foreigners coming in and doing jobs that Papua New Guineans could do.”

The parliamentarian who raised the issue in the floor of parliament Oro Governor Hon. Garry Juffa said he welcomed the suspension of Labor Secretary Morola but its timing smacks of election fever gimmickry.

"I hope that this is not merely an effort to win votes for PNC and O'Neill. Why was this not done earlier?," Juffa asked.

"Meanwhile will the transnational criminals who have corrupted the Department and perpetrated the corruption be dealt with? Will the illegals be apprehended and charged and fined and deported?" the Oro Governor said.

Source: The National, Date: May 24, 2017.


  1. Stanley Luanda23 May 2017 at 22:49

    It's too late Mr. Secretary for DoPM to suspend the person in charge, so much injustice has already been done to our country. The concern has been on going for many years by us citizens and all appropriate government departments did absolutely nothing to control and act by the laws of our nation regarding what has now surfaced in the interest of protecting PNGans from being deprived of labour and employment.
    Citizens we must rise up and not be blind by this very recent situation. There's just too many foreign workers in the country right now that have corrupted the department its not funny.
    We have not really had any serious debate in Parliament about providing employment to our already problematic and high unemployment rate and citizens we have every right to demand government to created the opportunities.
    The timing is questionable to throw this in the face of citizens, png citizens we want employment empowerment....
    Honestly everyone that has come in wrongfully and corruptly into our country in think its right you start thinking about repatriation back to your destination.
    Any officers found in the department found guilty of doing the wrong thing, you better start thinking of spending a few years in jail for the crime against PNGans who would have had the opportunity of employment...
    If you don't speak English for starters then you must be on the next plane out. You have illegally resided in png by not meeting one of our nation's criteria. Exceptions are for refugees and maybe heads of missions.....

    We need leaders who have PNG at heart first...

  2. Thank you Hon.G.Juffa for your consistent demand for answers from the authorities on the influx of foreigners into PNG and doing business reserved for Nationals etc.. Your voice for your people has now been heard resulting in the suspension of the Secretary for Labour & Industries , the very department that facilitates all the illegal entries for all these container rats from Asia. Let's hope proper investigations are carried out and the outcome made know to the public.

  3. Philip Karikuru23 May 2017 at 22:52

    PM O'NEIL'S SMART MOVE AGAIN AT ELECTION TIME.. TRYING TO TELL THE PEOPLE THAT HE HAS BEEN TRYING TO SAFEGUARD JOBS, EMPLOYMENT & BUSINESSES FOR PAPUA NEW GUINEANS. The Chinese, Indians, ....etc have taken all the jobs & businesses reserved for Papua New Guineans, many many people have lost jobs, many businesses have closed. These situations have all been expressed in social media so many times by people, by MP's Garry Juffa & Sam Basil, ...etc. THE O'NEIL GOVERNMENT HAD NOT TAKEN ANY POSITIVE ACTIONS TO STOP THESE AT ALL. WHY NOW???

  4. NBC News............
    The Opposition says, the suspension of the secretary for the Department of Labour and Industrial Relations, Mary Morola does not seem right.
    In a statement, Opposition Leader, Don Polye, says the suspension is not proper when the country is into the fourth week of election campaigning.
    Prime Minister Peter O'Neill had said the National Executive Council suspension Ms Morola because there are too many foreigners coming into the country who could not speak English.
    But Mr Polye condemned what he's described as a politically-orchestrated move to push Ms Morola out of office to make way for "another political staff" to take charge of the affairs of the department.
    NBC News....ends////