1 Dec 2010

New Police Commissioner requested shorter term

4:41 pm on 1 December 2010

The newly appointed Police Commissioner says he specifically asked for a shorter, three-year term and denies that means he will face added political pressure.

Peter Marshall, who currently heads the Solomon Islands Police, takes up the role in April next year.

Labour Party leader Phil Goff says the three-year term, as opposed to the present commissioner's five years, allows the Police Minister Judith Collins to apply more pressure on him.

Mr Goff says the new commissioner will be more likely to comply with her on operational matters for fear of not being reappointed.

Speaking from Honiara, Mr Marshall says he asked for a shorter term during the recruitment process, mainly for personal reasons, as he has already done 38 years policing and a five-year term would take him through to his early 60s.

Ms Collins rejects claims of political interference, saying Mr Marshall made clear to her when requesting a shorter employment period that he felt he could achieve what he needed to achieve in three years.

She says Mr Goff needs to reflect on his own actions regarding political interference with the police.