21 Nov 2006

Ilau must be held accountable over Moti affair, says former PNGDF head

11:16 am on 21 November 2006

The former head of Papua new Guinea's Defence Force, Major General Jerry Singirok, says the current suspended head must be held accountable for the Julian Moti saga.

Suspended commander Commodore Peter Ilau has handed over reins to the cabinet appointed acting commander Colonel Francis Agwi.

Commodore Ilau is one of three high high level bureaucratic suspensions made by the government so that the investigation into the Moti escape from PNG to the Solomon Islands - aboard a PNG military plane - can proceed unobstructed.

Major General Singirok says the defence force played a key role in was a major bureaucratic blunder without consulting the National Executive council.

"So the suspension of the Commander is timely and appropriate because the buck stops with the commander of the PNGDF and it's up to him to substantiate or justify if indeed they had been in control of elements of the Defence Force or not. If not, he has to explain to the government and the people why he's not in control and why subordinates below him have acted the way they did."