Senior PNG policeman under misconduct spotlight
Papua New Guinea's police commissioner Gary Baki has provided some clarity about allegations of misconduct against a senior policeman, Andy Bawa, whose posting to the police command in the Western Highlands last year was the subject of some mystery.
Papua New Guinea's police commissioner Gary Baki has provided some clarity about allegations of misconduct against a senior policeman.
Andy Boa, the former head of the National Capital District police command who was re-deployed by Mr Baki to the Highlands last year, has presented himself for questioning in the capital.
This comes after the new NCD commander, Benjamin Turi, claimed last week that Mr Boa was wanted for questioning but his whereabouts were unknown.
Commissioner Baki spoke about the matter to Johnny Blades
GARY BAKI: Why he was wanted for questioning: Andy was responsible for the policing part of the security operations for the South Pacific Games last year in Port Moresby. And what is inter-related with that was that there was some allowances funding given to him to pay his police officers and from my understanding of the reports that have been given to me, there is a substantial amount of money that was left over. But there was no accountability in terms of how this funding was used, even though he said he has acquitted.. he submitted an acquittal stating that the funds had been used for the purpose as it is where it was given to the members as part of their allowance. So that's basically the reason and that's why he's been wanted by police in NCD to be taken in for questioning in relations to that amount of money given to him.
JOHNNY BLADES: After that (the 2015 Pacific Games) he was deployed by you up to the Highlands, a Mt Hagen post. How come?
GB: Yes. Andy was on a transfer listing up to Mt Hagen when I issued a transfer directive last year, in September. Andy chose not to go up to Mt Hagen. He decided to remain back in Port Moresby. He applied for one year leave without pay, and as a result of that he found himself remaining in Port Moresby and so he did not take up this posting. In fact, he did not make any effort at all to go up to posting, even though it was a promotional transfer to get him up to Mt Hagen. I cannot sit down and wait for Andy because he failed to show up in Mt Hagen. The other officer who is up in Hagen and has been acting in the capacity for some time as the acting deputy commander there, was confirmed as the commander, and I got him promoted. So as far as I'm concerned, Andy is unattached at the moment.
JB: He's lost his position?
GB: He's lost his position because he refused to take it up.
JB: It seems a shame because he was quite highly spoken of as a young, future leader. Are you thinking he still has a future with the police?
GB: Well unless he refocuses himself and gets it back on to the table that he's interested in being re-deployed elsewhere, that's what he needs to show me. So as far as I'm concerned, the door is still open for him.
JB: His successor, Benjamin Turi in the NCD, had been talking about wanting Boa to come in for questioning, but that was shortly after his (Turi's) official residence was attacked by a hand grenade event. Any link?
GB: At the moment there is no direct link to suggest that Andy Boa was involved in this. It's inter-related in a couple of previous incidents related to police actions in Port Moresby that we wanted him to be questioned on as well, especially the one that is related to the famous escapee by the name of William Kapris.That's the centre of investigations around that.
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