web logo pilon

2012 PILON Annual Meeting - Kokopo, PNG

Papua New Guinea hosted the 31st Pacific Islands Law Officers’ Network (PILON) Annual Meeting from 29 to 31 October 2012 in Kokopo, PNG.  The theme of the meeting was ‘Challenges and Strategies to Enhance Democratic Governance and the Rule of Law’.

PILON member countries represented at the meeting included Australia, the Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue, Papua New Guinea, Pitcairn Islands, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

The following observer members also attended:  International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC); Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS); and the University of the South Pacific (USP).  Representatives from the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG/ML), the South Pacific Lawyers’ Association (SPLA), AusAID, the New Zealand Parliamentary Counsel Office, the Oceania Customs Organisation and the Australian High Commission (Port Moresby) also observed the meeting.

Meeting Outcomes

Members attending the meeting concluded a communiqué.  Members also agreed to formal outcomes and a work plan for the PILON Secretariat in 2013:

The PILON Secretariat also provided a report on its activities to those in attendance:  PILON Secretariat Report 2012 [PDF 573KB]

Members considered and endorsed a draft two year Strategic Plan for PILON, due to commence in 2013.  The draft Plan will be finalised before the end of 2012, and then made available with further details on this website.

Key issues

The meeting was opened by the Hon Kerenga Kua LLB OL MP, Minister for Justice & Attorney General of Papua New Guinea.  The official opening address provided by the Minister welcomed delegates to Kokopo on behalf of the PNG Government, and referred to key aspects of the theme of the meeting, including the importance of accountability for democratic governance, challenges posed by corruption in upholding the rule of law, and the essential role played by Government lawyers in upholding and strengthening the rule of law: Opening Address [PDF 239KB]

 Members considered presentations and discussed key issues relating to the theme of the meeting including:

    • • Democratic governance and the rule of law (presentation by Professor Paul Rishworth: [PDF])
    • • Current and emerging challenges to democratic governance and the rule of law (presentation by Professor John Nonggor)
    • Leadership and good governance (presentation by Mr John Toguata CBE: [PDF 303KB])

    • • Role of Government lawyers in enhancing democratic governance & the rule of law (presentation by Hon. Maurice Sheehan CMG:[PDF 650KB]
    • • Practical anti-corruption strategies to support the rule of law and good governance – covering:

      • -Anti-money laundering measures as an anti-corruption tool (Sisilia Eteuati (APG-ML));
      • -Anti-corruption measures – Tonga (Neil Adsett (Attorney General, Tonga)); and
      • -Experiences of the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) mutual evaluation process (Molean Kilepak(PNG Department of Justice and Attorney General); and Roger Wilkins AO (Secretary, Australian Attorney-General’s Department))

A summary of each presentation is contained in the Meeting Outcomes Report, above.

Presentations were also provided by PILON Observer Members and other regional organisations providing an update on relevant regional initiatives.  These included the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, International Committee of the Red Cross, University of the South Pacific Law School, South Pacific Lawyers' Association; and Oceania Customs Organisation.

Members also considered presentations providing updates regarding the Pacific Prosecutors’ Association, Pacific Legislative Drafters’ Technical Forum and PILON Litigation Skills Programme.  Relevant resolutions by Members, in response to these updates, are contained in the Meeting outcomes report.

Other meeting documents are available on the Country Reports page (here) for the 31st Annual Meeting.

IMG_0553   IMG_0580 IMG_0586
IMG_0555   IMG_0585 IMG_0589
IMG_0652   IMG_0653 IMG_0658