23 Dec 2010

Vanuatu watchdog hopes new government will take action over out of control police

7:06 pm on 23 December 2010

Transparency International in Vanuatu has expressed outrage at the lack of action in the wake of a coroner's report that was scathing in its criticism of the Vanuatu paramilitary police.

New Zealand judge, Nevin Dawson, had investigated the death of prisoner within hours of being recaptured by the Vanuatu Mobile Force.

He had been badly beaten.

Justice Dawson wrote of force with a culture of violence that considered itself above the law, and he encouraged the government to rein it in.

To date neither the government or police have taken any action and TI's president, Marie Noelle Ferriuex Patterson, says the organisation is outraged.

She says they are hoping the assumption of power earlier this month by Sato Kilman, who has criticised the VMF in the past, may finally lead to change.

"So ministers have changed, prime ministers have changed so maybe will put the politicians in front of their responsibilities, especially when they have taken very strong positions, especially the prime minister concerning these alleged offences by the police."