28 Jul 2014

Solomons yet to find suitable local police chief

2:39 pm on 28 July 2014

An academic says there remains a public perception in Solomon Islands that it is still too difficult to find a suitable local to be the Police Commissioner.

The comment from Tarcisius Tara Kabutaulaka, an associate professor at the Center for Pacific Islands Studies at the University of Hawai'i, follows the appointment of an Australian, Frank Prendergast, as the Solomons police chief.

Dr Kabutaulaka says the appointment process has been long and encompassed a brief stint as commissioner by a local, Peter Aoraunisaka, who was quickly withdrawn after he was found to be too old for the position.

He says no suitable local candidate has emerged.

"And this is because of experiences with the police and alleged involvement by some high ranking police officers - not all of them - in the conflict that we had in late 1999/2000 up until the deployment of RAMSI in 2003."

Tarcisius Tara Kabutaulaka