Prime Minister Peter O’Neill with Don Polye in happier times. Image courtesy of madNESS.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill with Don Polye in happier times. Image courtesy of madNESS.

DON POLYE has been stripped of his treasurer portfolio in the the most recent shake-up of the Papua New Guinean cabinet, accused by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill of “creating instability.”

Following the recent sacking of Petroleum and Energy Minister William Duma, the PNG PM wielded the axe on Mr Polye and Labour and Industrial Relations Minister Mark Maipakai.

The decommissioning of Mr Maipakai as minister was done to preserve the integrity and public confidence of the Government after he was arrested and charged by police – a matter which is now before the National Court.

In a statement, Mr O’Neill said the removal of Mr Polye came as result of him causing instability in the Government.

Mr Polye is leader of the Triumph Heritage Empowerment party, the second largest party in Mr O’Neill’s government.

“Mr Polye’s conduct as Minister for Treasury and a senior partner in the Government has been an ongoing concern for the Government,” O’Neill said.

“He occupies one of the key positions in the Government dealing directly with financial and economic management issues of the country and as such his conduct has a direct impact on the stability and confidence of the Government.”

Mr O’Neill said the sacking of the now former Treasurer was in the best interest of the government and reassured that the Triumph Heritage Empowerment party remained an integral member of the government.

Hinting that Mr Polye possibly wasn’t getting on with other members of the government, Mr O’Neill went on to say that all members and ministers were expected to work together cohesively to develop and implement government policies.

“This Government since coming into Office after the 2012 general election has introduced a lot of innovative policies, aimed at improving the quality for life of our people,” he said.

“Any lack of solidarity dissents amongst our coalition partners or individuals including ministers will defeat the stability, trust and confidence of our people and investors.”

The PM said he was not going to risk economic opportunities available to PNG by allowing others to bring instability to the government and its policies.

“It wasn’t easy but for the good of our country,” he said.

Mr O’Neill has taken over the Treasury Ministry while his deputy, Leo Dion, will hold the Labour and Industrial Relations portfolio until permanent appointments are made, following consultations with coalition leaders.