9 Oct 2012

Senior officers in Vanuatu say arresting Caulton led to their suspension

5:20 am on 9 October 2012

Recently suspended senior police officers in Vanuatu say their suspensions are connected to their involvement in the arrest of the re-appointed Acting Police Commissioner, Arthur Caulton.

Arthur Caulton was earlier arrested for alleged mutiny and inciting mutiny in relation to the former police commissioner, Joshua Bong's, suspension.

On Friday, Vanuatu's Head of State, Iolu Johnson Abbil fired Joshua Bong and re-appointed Arthur Caulton as the acting Commissioner of Police.

Mr Bong says the caretaker Minister of Home Affairs, George Wells, suspended 10 high ranking Police and Vanuatu Mobile Force Officers at the recommendation of Mr Caulton.

Our correspondent in Vanuatu, Hilaire Bule, says he asked the officers why they were suspended.

"We have been in contact with the suspended officials and they have told us that the main reason for their suspension is in connection with the recent arrest of Mr Caulton and the other four senior police officers recently."

Hilaire Bule says Mr Caulton did not want to comment on the reasons for the suspensions.