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PNG Declares Friday 8 January, 2021 as Public Holiday as Sir Mekere to be laid to rest at Independence Hill

A tomb for the late Sir Mekere Morauta is being built on Independence Hill in Port Moresby. 

It will be the final resting place for the late member for Moresby North - West and former Prime Minister. 

Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare paying his respect for late Sir Mekere. NBC Photo 

According to the Organizing Committee of the State Funeral, the tomb would be ready before Friday. 

Sir Mekere will be the country's second Prime Minister after Bill Skate to be laid to rest at the Independence Hill, next to Parliament House. 

Sir Mekere's body was laid in State at the Grand Hall at Parliament yesterday to allow the public to pay their last respects.

Thousands of Papua New Guineans turned up at the National Parliament main entrance to pay respect to the late former Prime Minister and Moresby North West MP, Sir Mekere Morauta.

Very Important People including the current Prime Minister, James Marape, and the country’s first Prime Minister, Sir Michael Somare started the viewing of the casket, and then it was opened to the general public, all day, to pay their last respects to one of the country’s great statesman. 

On Friday, January 8th, a State Funeral will be held at the Sioni Kami Memorial United Church from 10am to 12pm.

The late Sir Mekere's body will then be laid to rest at Independence Hill at Waigani.


Meanwhile, Papua New Guinea has declared this Friday January 8, 2021 as a National public holiday to mark the State Funeral and burial of former Prime Minister and Moresby North West MP late Sir Mekere Morauta.

Chairman of the Organizing Committee of late Mekere's funeral program and Moresby South MP Justin Tkatchenko made the announcement today.

The public holiday was gazetted as a one off national public holiday and not to be held annually. 

Minister Tkatchenko says this will also mark the beginning of the new precedence where the State Funeral day of former or current Prime Ministers  will be marked as public a holiday.

Late Sir Mekere's State Funeral will be held on Friday at Sioni Kami Memorial Church before his burial at Independence Hill.

Prime Minister James Marape will lead the State Funeral program and former Prime Minister Sir Rabbie Namaliu will read late Sir Mekere's eulogy. 

With this new precedence being set, late former Prime Minister Sir William Skate will be the only exception.


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