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Sir Julius Chan who was the founding Finance Minister under the Prime Ministership of Sir Michael Somare during the early years of independent Papua New Guinea has extended prayers of hope to his dear friend Sir Michael.
He said in a statement today he only became aware that his friend was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer today.
A statement was released late yesterday that Sir Michael was in a critical condition and Cardinal John Ribat Archbishop of the Catholic Church in Port Moresby has requested prayer for Sir Michael.
Sir Julius thinks of Sir Michael as a determined, brave and visionary person.
He recalled the early days of nationhood how they ventured into the unknown taking a thousand tribes with them to form the united nation called Papua New Guinea.
“We came 45 years ago, setting the foundation for stability, growth, advancement and education. We may sometimes be divided politically but always United.”
“We in New Ireland will pray with your family and all well wishers around PNG and the World,” Sir Julius said.
Both statesmen recently celebrated together during the Grand Opening of the New Ireland Legislative Assembly in September last year.
Papua New Guineans over social media are wishing the first Prime Minister speedy recovery and many are praying for him.
Sir Michael is 84 years old, he will be 85 in April.