By SAMUEL RAITANO
THE official opening of the 2015 legal year yesterday coincided with the ground breaking ceremony for a new National Court complex at the Waigani National and
Supreme Court premises. The grounding breaking ceremony was officiated by Chief Justice Sir Salamo Injia in front of all members of the legal fraternity, other guests and members of the public. Sir Salamo said the complex will hopefully be completed by May 2018, and should be in operation when the APEC Summit is held in the capital city.The complex will comprise of a new building housing the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, National Court, 14 courtrooms and other rooms for registry and administrative functions. He said the detailed design of the facility will be due for completion in May this year and starting July, the main construction will commence. With its completion in 2018, the existing court operations will move into the new building whilst the old building will be vacated for refurbishment. Contracts for preparatory and temporary site facilities have awarded to Global Construction and Avenell Engineering Services. Procurement of the main building contractor for the facility will commence in the middle of this year. The National Budget allocation for the project for this year is K180 million. The total estimated appropriation for the project over 4 years is at a tune of K610 million. Sir Salamo also mentioned that Australia has indicated to assist with K100 million.