Somare to address Press Club


Papua New Guinea's founding Prime Minister Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare will be the guest speaker at the next NBC National Press Club - Speaker Series.

Counting down to his retirement as the East Sepik Provincial MP after close to 50 years, the country's longest serving politician will take the podium on April 10 in a special presentation that will feature a limited number of journalists and be broadcast on NBC radio and television.

First elected to the House of Assembly in 1968 representing the East Sepik regional seat, Sir Michael championed the push to self-government and independence as the parliamentary leader of Pangu Pati and became the country's founding PM upon independence from Australia on September 16, 1975. He has played a critical role in the formation and evolution of PNG as a nation state over the last 41 years and was Prime Minister on four occasions in his political career.

National Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) managing director Kora Nou and the Media Council of PNG president Alexander Rheeney thanked Sir Michael for agreeing to be the guest speaker on the eve of his exit from active politics.

"Sir Michael represented the hopes and the aspirations of all Papua New Guineans when he led the charge as a politician to self-government and ultimately independence over 41 years ago and has gone on to play a critical role in shaping this nation. His parting message to the nation as our founding Prime Minister is significant," said Mr Nou.

The NBC National Press Club - Speaker Series is broadcast on NBC national radio and is delayed telecast on NBC Television. There is a training component to the event, which is done for Papua New Guinean journalists to prepare them for the event.

In this election year the NBC National Press Club is part of the effort by the initiative's partners to support an open and democratic media to provide access to information. The tickets to the April 10 event can be purchased at the Lamana Hotel reception. The initiative is a partnership between the National Broadcasting Corporation, Media Council of PNG and Lamana Hotel Ltd.