12 Jan 2007

Julian Moti inquiry going public

12:37 pm on 12 January 2007

Papua New Guinea's Defence Minister, Martin Aini has signed the instrument re-opening the Julian Moti inquiry to the media and public.

Last week lawyers for the Chief Secretary to the Government, Joshua Kalinoe, and the Director General of the National Security Advisory Council Joseph Assaigo, made applications to have their evidence heard in camera.

Our correspondent in PNG Alex Rheeney says while the move to open the inquiry to scrutiny has caused some uneasiness among government ministers, it is a positive move foward.

"It's a big boost for transparency and accountability to Papua New Guineans, who really really want to know who gave the approval for Julian Moti to be flown to the Solomon Islands last year."

Meanwhile, Colonel Vagi Oala, is due to give evidence at the inquiry today, which our correspondent says could be the turning point because he was the most senior officer on the Julian Moti flight.