The Bougainville Referendum Commission chairperson and former Prime Minister of Ireland, Bertie Ahern, has asked for a delay to the referendum.
The independence vote is scheduled to take place from October 12th.
Voter registration has been underway for some time in Bougainville and in other locations across Papua New Guinea, Australia and Solomon Islands.
This delay has come as a surprise for many Bougainvillians who are prepared to cast their vote in October.
According to media reports, Mr. Ahern has requested a 6-week delay to the referendum, pushing the vote back to November.
A formal statement will be issued in due course by the Bougainville Affairs Minister, Sir Puka Temu.