8 Sep 2005

Vanuatu minister opposes plans to appoint foreigner to head police

4:53 pm on 8 September 2005

Vanuatu's lands minister Willie Jimmy has voiced opposition to plans to appoint a foreigner as police commissioner.

The Minister for Internal Affairs, George Wells, says plans to restructure the police force include appointing a top official and he believes a foreigner is needed.

Mr Wells says a foreign commissioner could put back discipline in a force which troubled by inner division, and help restructure the whole system.

However Mr Jimmy says he doubts whether a foreign commissioner would be capable of solving the problems hampering the Force.

He says such an appointment would undermine Vanuatu sovereignty.

"I consider that would be a discredit to our current high-ranking officers that have complained. We believe in them and their capabilities, and they can do a much better job. If they want to improve the administration of the police, they should look at the management level of the administration of the police."