24 Feb 2005

Signs that Australia's police deployment to PNG is having the desired effect - commander

7:36 pm on 24 February 2005

Australia's top policeman in Papua New Guinea says the deployment of Australian police to Port Moresby is paying off with improved standards of policing by the local constabulary.

Australia Assisting Police Commander Barry Turner told a Port Moresby Chamber of Commerce meeting that things are really turning around in a positive sense.

He says the Australian force, deployed under the Enhanced Co-operation Programme is still only at two-thirds of its planned strength of 210 officers, but positive changes were occurring across the board.

The aim of the five-year project was to work with Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary officers to increase their confidence and capacity to do their job and improve their standing in the community.

Commander Turner says that improved capacity is alredy apparent.

The ECP police program has also been busy organising the upgrade of police stations, vehicle fleets, armouries, communications equipment and the officers' personal equipment.