30 Aug 2012

PNG police chief directed to drop sedition charges against leading judges

6:16 pm on 30 August 2012

The Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O'Neill has written to the police commissioner, Tom Kulunga, to have sedition charges against the Chief Justice Sir Salamo Injia and Justice Nicholas Kirriwom dropped.

The Post Courier says he has also directed the commissioner to drop charges of interfering with political liberties laid against senior police officer Fred Yakasa.

Mr O'Neill says this is in the best interests of the country and the people.

It follows a commitment made by the new government when parliament was formally opened early last week.

The three men had been arrested and charged by police on a complaint laid by Mr O'Neill during an impasse just before this year's elections.

Chief Justice Sir Salamo and Justice Kirriwom were charged with sedition while Mr Yakasa was charged with interfering with political liberty when he and other police tried to stop Mr O'Neill and other senior MPs from entering Government House to be sworn in.