21 Jan 2005

PNG prisons minister admits jailbreak threatening his job

8:27 am on 21 January 2005

The Papua New Guinea prisons minister, Posi Menai, says his job may be on the line, following the escape of 65 inmates from Bomana Prison near Port Moresby.

Two of the inmates have been recaptured since Tuesday's jailbreak.

Three of those on the run had been serving life sentences whilst most had committed serious crimes including murder, rape and robbery.

Mr Menai says it could have been an inside job- after two officers abandoned their posts - and a team has begun to investigate.

"Two officers from the Correctional Services, one CID officer from police and another legal officer from the Justice Department, so they will investigate and the two officers concerned have been suspended without pay from Tuesday afternoon."

Mr Menai says he'll find out within the week whether he will keep his job.