10 Jul 2007

Solomons public service commission says its suspension on Moti still holds

3:23 pm on 10 July 2007

The Solomon Islands Public Service Commission says it has not lifted the suspension on the Attorney General-in waiting, Julian Moti.

This is despite reports the governor-general is scheduled to swear in the Australian lawyer as attorney-general this afternoon.

Mr Moti is wanted by Australia on child sex charges dating back to 1997 in Vanuatu.

He was suspended by the Public Service Commission until such time his name was cleared.

The chairman of the Commission, Edmund Andresen, says the High Court case challenging the suspension is still ongoing.

"The challenge was whether or not the Public Service Commission has the power to suspend because they believe it is the (power of) the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Public Service. But the Commission maintains that it has the power, that is the position at the moment. So as far as we are concerned, the suspension is still current because of those charges."

Edmund Andreson says it would not be advisable to have an Attorney General with such charges hanging over him.