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Peters pays tribute to Joseph Kabui

Rt Hon Winston Peters
Minister of Foreign Affairs


09 June 2008
Media statement

Peters pays tribute to Joseph Kabui

Foreign Minister Winston Peters today expressed his great sadness at the sudden death of Joseph Kabui, President of the autonomous Papua New Guinea province of Bougainville.

“As Premier of the province until 1989, Joseph Kabui was a prominent figure in Bougainville long before conflict broke out on the island, and his mana was invaluable during the peace and reconciliation efforts throughout the 1990s,” Mr Peters said.

"Mr Kabui was elected the President of the first Autonomous Bougainville Government in 2005, following the signing of the Bougainville Peace Agreement in 2001.

"His presidency was an affirmation of the decade-long peace process – in which New Zealand was intimately involved – and he presided over a crucial period of stabilisation on Bougainville, which consolidated the accomplishments of that process.

“Mr Kabui’s strong leadership helped Bougainville emerge from the devastation of civil war, and set it on the path to recovery and progress. His strength of character and unwavering commitment to his people will be sorely missed.

“Our thoughts are with Mr Kabui’s family at this very sad time, and also with the people of Bougainville," Mr Peters said.

ENDS

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