23 May 2006

Solomons police commander says claims of police negligence are irresponsible

8:24 pm on 23 May 2006

The commander of the Participating Police Force in Solomon Islands says claims police were negligent during the rioting last month in Honiara are irresponsible and without foundation.

The Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare says police had made no preparations and that they were totally negligent.

He is to set up a commission of inquiry into the police's performance.

The PPF commander, Will Jamieson, says the PPF performed well above the call of duty and reports of incredible acts of bravery by officers are still coming to light.

Commander Jamieson says these are not the actions of people who do not care about what happens in Honiara and the Solomons.

He says the rioting could not have been predicted.

"And I need to point to people that the control was wrested back by the police within a very short period of time, comparatively, and noting that no one was killed and also noting that within a very short period of time, within seven days,, the RSIP with its taskforce and support from the PPF arrested a number of the main instigators of the riots."