26 Jul 2014

Fiji police chief assures all complaints investigated

4:04 pm on 26 July 2014

Fiji's police commissioner, Ben Groenewald, has assured Fiji all complaints against government and police will be investigated

The Fiji Times reports Mr Groenewald saying he would ensure justice to all those whose complaints had not been addressed, and he is ready to reopen cases if they merit further investigation.

The paper says Mr Groenewald made these comments after the leader of the People's Democratic Party, Felix Anthony, challenged him to address human rights injustices allegedly caused by the military.

The prime minister, rear admiral Frank Bainimarama, said last year he would stand by his men, police officers or anyone else, who may be named in investigations into the brutal beating of two men shown in an online video.

But the commissioner says it does not matter whether the suspect is a police officer, a politician or a member of public, the same process will be followed and incidents will be investigated.

Mr Groenewald says he was only made aware of last year's allegations of the assault of the two prison escapees three weeks ago.

He says that case has now been sent to the public prosecutor.

The police's chief of operations, Rusiate Tudravu, told media the case was closed and there would be no more discussion on the matter.

Mr Anthony says as well as the alleged beatings of the prisoners Mr Groenewald has to look into the beatings of citizens who were subjected to intimidation.

He says the police commissioner has a lot to do if he is to get recognition for the work that he is supposed to be doing in Fiji.