18 Jul 2014

Solomons names new Police Commissioner

1:07 pm on 18 July 2014

The Solomon Islands government has announced that it has chosen an Australian, Frank Prendergast, as the country's new Police Commissioner.

The government says the Prime Minister, Gordon Darcy Lilo, has advised the Governor General, Sir Frank Kabui, of the appointment.

It says he was chosen among four shortlisted candidates - two locals and two foreigners.

Mr Prendergast's appointment is for two years effective from the date that the Governor General will formally appoint him.

According to the website of the Australian Federal Police, Mr Prendergast's career has included time as the national manager of the AFP's International Deployment Group, which manages deployments to countries such as Afghanistan, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.

He succeeds Peter Aoraunisaka, who was forced to quit last year because he was found to have been appointed despite being over the official retirement age of 55.

The last Australian to serve as Solomon Islands Police Commissioner, Shane Castles, was dismissed in 2007 and barred from returning to Honiara as the government labelled him a threat to the country's public security and morality.