22 Aug 2008

Vanuatu police force returns to normal following attempted removal of Commissioner

1:50 pm on 22 August 2008

Vanuatu police say the force has returned to normal after last week's attempt by several senior police officers to remove the Police Commissioner and his deputy.

The deputy Police Commissioner, Arthur Caulton, says senior officers pressured the Police Services Commission to appoint a new Police Commissioner to replace Louis Patu.

The officers were disgruntled after an Auditor General's report revealed the Police Force was paying for electricity and water bills at the Commissioner's residence when he should be paying for them himself.

Major Caulton says the attempt was probably illegal but it went no further and an investigation is being conducted into the affair.

"We are now looking at what happened exactly and we will probably inform the Commissioner that although there was some indication as to requesting the Police Services Commission, it should have been an inside matter that seems to have been dealt with by the Police Services Commission."

Arthur Caulton