There were none of the usual extravagant celebrations usually associated with Independence Day festivities when Papua-New Guinea achieved self-government on Saturday (1 December).
CU Australian flag and Papua-new Guinea symbol (2 shots)
LV New High Commissioner, Mr. Wilson Johnson takes oath (SOUND) ENDS on CU of Somare.
SV Officials and newsmen
SOUND IN at 19 ft. 5.8 metres, 30 seconds. SOUND OUT at 34 ft. 10.4 metres 54 seconds. Somare sits and signs documents of office.
MR. WILSON JOHNSON: "That I well and truly serve her, in the office of High Commissioner of Papua-New Guinea, and I will faithfully and impartially perform the duties of that office."
MR. SOMARE: "I, Michael Somare, do swear that except as may be required by the law, I will not divulge any information, including the contents of any document of which I may become aware through my membership of the Executive Council of Papua-New Guinea, or anything said or done by myself or any other member of the Council at the meeting of the Council, so help me God."
Initials BB/0003 AS/AW/BB/0014
The new High Commissioner promised to govern impartially in his oath-of-office:
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Background: There were none of the usual extravagant celebrations usually associated with Independence Day festivities when Papua-New Guinea achieved self-government on Saturday (1 December).
The only official event in Port Moresby was the swearing-in of the former Australian Administrator, Mr. Les Wilson Johnson as the new High Commissioner. Seven others, including the nation's Chief Minister, Mr. Michael Somare, also took oaths-of-office.
The reason given for the lack of celebrations was that a more appropriate occasion for them would be when the country achieves full independence. At present, Australia still administers the country's defence and foreign affairs. An unofficial explanation for the lack of festivities was that were fears of inter-tribal clashes between those who favoured independence and those who opposed it.
And in his oath-of-office, the Chief Minister, Mr. Michael Somare, pledged to uphold the confidentiality of his office:
No final date has been set for the full independence of the Pacific territory that has a population of two-and-a-half million and where life, in many regions, remains very primitive