National Capital District Commission (NCDC) Legal Status and Functions

NCDC's Legal Status

The National Capital District Commission (NCDC) operates under a law known as the National Capital District Commission Act. This law basically allows the establishment of a governing body for the purpose of providing municipal services and other essentials. The NCDC Act specifies all activities the Commission is responsible for and the avenues it can use to generate revenues.

Initial Arrangements

The National Capital District (NCD) was declared as an administrative area in 1974. At Independence in 1975, the District's main centre, Port Moresby , was declared Capital City of Papua New Guinea by the National Parliament.

In 1981, following representation by the traditional landowners, the Motu Koitabu, a Commission of Inquiry into the future government of the NCD was established. As a result, on 12 May 1982 , two new institutions of local government for the city were created under the National Capital District Government (Preparatory Arrangements) Act 1982. The purpose of this Act was to establish an interim government for the NCD and make preparatory arrangements for the establishment of a government for NCD as required by Section 4(4) of the Constitution of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea.

The Motu Koitabu Interim Assembly (MKIA) was established with powers and rights to legislate in ten Motu Koitabu villages and associated customary held land within the NCD. The National Capital District Interim Commission was established with all those responsibilities of the former Port Moresby City council together with those powers provided for under the 1982 Act with jurisdiction for the whole of the NCD except those areas over which the MKIA had responsibility.

NCDC Act 1990 established permanent government for the NCD from 5 November 1990. The introduction of this Act resulted in the amalgamation of MKIA with NCDC. Further amendments to the NCDC (Amendment) Act 1992, which came into operation on 30 November 1992, established the Motu Koitabu Council (MKC).

Again in 1995, amendments to the NCDC (Amendment) Act 1995 that came into operation on 19 July 1995 established a system of government for NCD that comprises the NCDC, MKC and the Local-Level Governments in the NCD.

Current System of NCDC Government.

The National Capital District Commission Act 2001 came into operation from 14 December 2001. This Act repealed all the previous versions and re-established National Capital District Commission as a corporation with perpetual succession and having a common seal. The current government of NCD comprises of National Capital District Commission and Motu Koitabu Council.

There are no major changes between the repealed NCDC Act and the current one in force except the system of Government for NCD and the composition of the Commission's Board. Although LLG was not part of the government of NCD, the new act established LLG in the three open electorates. The new Act also required NCDC to share its 5% of GST with Central Province . An amendment in 2004 required NCDC to share 10% of GST with Central, 3% with Gulf and 2% with MKC. NCDC is defending this amendment in the courts.

Functions of NCDC.

The functions of the Commission are to control, manage and administer the NCD and to ensure the welfare of the NCD and the people in it; and to ensure that an adequate level of assistance is given towards Tabudubu Limited, the company established for the Motu Koitabu people of NCD.

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