25 Jul 2014

Former Solomons PM backs new police chief

7:15 am on 25 July 2014

The former Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare says he supports the appointment of an Australian as his country's new Police Commissioner.

Former Australian Federal Police officer Frank Prendergast is the new commissioner after a brief period when a Solomon Islands national held the role.

Peter Aoraunisaka was removed last year when he was found to have been appointed despite being over the retirement age.

Mr Sogavare says the new appointment consolidates the good work that Australia has done in securing law and order in Solomon Islands.

He says it's felt that senior local police are still vulnerable to ethnic bias.

"We will continue to monitor that kind of negative perception and at some point in time hand it over to a hopefully neutral (local) police commissioner who sees Solomons Islands as a Solomon Islander, not through the eyes of a particular ethnic group."

Manasseh Sogavare.