16 Dec 2011

PNG call for unity within police as rivalry splits force

1:44 pm on 16 December 2011

The Papua New Guinea Police Commissioner appointed by Peter O'Neill says there is a need for unity among the force during the current political impasse.

This comes after extra police were flown in to the capital as Mr O'Neill called for government offices to be secured.

A group of police loyal to Sir Michael Somare has been guarding Government House since Monday.

A police spokesman says Commissioner Tom Kulunga has renounced Sir Michael's appointment of Fred Yakasa as Police Commissioner.

The spokesman, Dominic Kakas, says police will secure government buildings today.

"Basically secure meaning they'll be guarding the parameters of the government buildings. They will not be entering and arresting, for that matter. Commissioner Kulunga said that commonsense must and will prevail, and we are, as much as possible, tryingto sort this out the Melanesian way, through roundtable discussions. We will be talking and, as I said, he (Kulunga) is appealing for unity within the force at this critical point in time."

Dominic Kakas