30 Dec 2004

Solomon Islands police commissioner says he wants to keep his job

11:26 am on 30 December 2004

The Solomon Islands police commissioner, Bill Morrell, says he would like to keep his job and stay for another year or possibly longer.

The statement comes after a political row caused by Australia's offer to provide a new commissioner.

This was reported to have been accepted by the Solomon Islands prime minister, Sir Allen Kemakeza, but the government then decided the position should be advertised with the Police Minister saying Canberra's candidate could apply along with everybody else.

Mr Morrell hasn't hitherto commented on his future plans or whether he would re-apply.

But, the police commissioner says his contract has been extended for another three months, and he'd like to stay if possible.

"I would be interested to see the terms and conditions but yes, I'm keen to remain here. I think the continuity is important and I would certainly like to stay for a further year, and perhaps longer than that as well. What I'm interested in is to make sure that the Royal Solomon Islands police can move forward and if I can assist in that process, then I'm pleased to do so."

Mr Morrell says his contract was set to finish at the end of the year but it's been extended until the 31st March.