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2019 Bougainvillean independence referendum

An independence referendum will be held in Bougainville on 17 October 2019.[1] The vote is the result of an agreement between the Government of Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government, and was originally scheduled for 15 June 2019,[2] before being delayed due to a row over funding.[3] The vote is not binding and the Government of Papua New Guinea has the final say on what becomes of Bougainville in the event of voters choosing independence.[4]

Bougainvillean independence referendum, 2019
Do you agree for Bougainville to have: (1) Greater Autonomy (2) Independence?
LocationAutonomous Region of Bougainville,  Papua New Guinea
Date17 October 2019



According to the Bougainville Peace Agreement, a referendum which includes the option of independence must be held at the latest by June 2020.[5] Australian Strategic Policy Institute analyst Karl Claxton said there is a wide expectation Bougainville will vote to become independent.[6] In October 2018, former Taoiseach of Ireland Bertie Ahern was appointed to chair the Bougainville Referendum Commission, which is responsible for preparing the referendum.[7]


The question to be put to voters is:

Do you agree for Bougainville to have: (1) Greater Autonomy (2) Independence?[8]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Bougainville independence vote delayed to October". Reuters. 2018-03-01. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  2. ^ "Bougainville and Papua New Guinea set target date for independence referendum". ABC News. 2016-05-23. Retrieved 2017-10-21.
  3. ^ "Independence vote delayed for Papua New Guinea's Bougainville". France 24. 2019-03-01. Retrieved 2019-03-02.
  4. ^ "Bougainville referendum not binding - PM". Radio New Zealand. 2019-03-11. Retrieved 2019-03-18.
  5. ^ "Move to postpone Bougainville Referendum". Papua New Guinea Post Courier. 2019-02-08. Retrieved 2019-02-09.
  6. ^ "PNG leader apologises to Bougainville for bloody 1990s civil war". Australian Associated Press. 2014-01-29. Retrieved 2019-02-09.
  7. ^ "Bougainville 'very happy' to have Bertie Ahern involved". Radio New Zealand. 2018-10-17. Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  8. ^ "Question agreed for Bougainville's independence referendum". Radio New Zealand. 2018-10-13. Retrieved 2018-10-19.

External linksEdit