Sir Mekere hands over to Minister Micah

Ministerial responsibility for Public Enterprises and State Assets was handed over today at a ceremony,
conducted by IPBC Managing Director Thomas Abe, in IPBC’s board room.

Former Minister Sir Mekere Morauta formally congratulated the new Minister, Hon Ben Micah MP on his election
to Parliament and appointment as Minister.

Minister Micah noted that he, Sir Mekere and Mr Abe had a long association with public enterprises and related
policy issues.

“When IPBC was created in 2002 by Sir Mekere, I was the head of its predecessor organisation, the Privatisation
Commission,” he said.

“Sir Mekere was my Minister, responsible for the wide-ranging reforms that were undertaken in the public sector.
Mr Abe was a Privatisation Commissioner, before going on to become head of the Independent Consumer and
Competition Commission, which was also created as part of those reforms.

“So we all know the issues involved and how important they are to the future of Papua New Guinea.
“In the past 12 months Sir Mekere has laid the groundwork for more reform and rehabilitation of IPBC and its
Public Enterprises.

“I would like to thank him for what he has achieved in that short time, and I assure him that I will be pushing
reform and rehabilitation equally vigorously.
“Public Enterprises play a critical role in the delivery and essential services and infrastructure to the people of
Papua New Guinea.

“It is clear than they have not been performing. Service delivery standards have been declining and public
infrastructure is crumbling around us.

“That is not acceptable to the O’Neill Government, and it is certainly not acceptable to our citizens.
“Therefore over the next five years I will be cracking the whip to make sure that IPBC and Public Enterprises
provide reliable and affordable services and that infrastructure maintenance and development goes ahead at a
faster pace.”

Sir Mekere said Mr Micah had a very good understanding of the portfolio and the potential difference it could
make to national development.

“I have tried to change the way Public Enterprises work, both in terms of policy governing them and the way they
go about their business,” he said.

“Papua New Guinea simply could not afford for them to continue on as they were. They were not delivering. It is
as simple as that, and they had to change.

“I leave them in good hands, and I am confident that the new Minister will pursue the reform and rehabilitation
that the nation so desperately needs.”

ENDS

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