Statement from the Office of the ABG President
It is with deep sadness that I learnt today of the passing of one of Bougainville’s own senior statesmen, the Late Gerard Sinato, after a long illness.
On behalf of the Autonomous Bougainville Government, the people of Bougainville, my wife Elizabeth, I would like to extend our most heartfelt and deepest sympathies to the immediate family of the Late Gerard Sinato and people of Kunua.
The late Gerard Sinato is from Kiakara village in the Kunua District and was a man of principle who served Bougainville and his people wholeheartedly, with great commitment and aspiration to see Bougainville prosper peacefully.
Prior to the Bougainville crisis, the late Sinato was Deputy Premier in the North Solomons Provincial government in 1985. He was then elected as the second Premier of the Bougainville Transitional Government in November 1996, following the death of former Premier Late Theodore Miriung.
Late Sinato was instrumental in leading the pro-government delegation to the first peace talks in New Zealand in 1997, and was also a signatory to the Bougainville Peace Agreement, signed in Arawa in 2001.
He also held various leadership roles where he served humbly and with great dignity, as member in the North West Bougainville Interim Authority, Vice President in the Bougainville’s People’s Congress, Deputy Governor in the Interim Bougainville Provincial Government and a member of the Bougainville Constitutional Commission.
In June 2005 when the Autonomous Bougainville Government was established, the Late Sinato was elected as Member for Teua Constituency where he served his people until 2010, under the leadership of former President, Late Joseph Kabui.
It is truly a sad time for Bougainville as we mourn the loss of one of our great sons, and we acknowledge the unwavering efforts of his bold leadership that helped deliver Bougainville through our dark days of the conflict and through tough negotiations and discussions, which eventually led to the peace we have today in Bougainville.
May his soul rest in eternal peace.
Honorable Chief Dr John L Momis, GCL, MHR
President of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville
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