15 Oct 2014

Inquiry into PNG hit and run death involving police

3:18 pm on 15 October 2014

Papua New Guinea's Police Commissioner says he wants an immediate investigation into a hit-and-run incident near the capital Port Moresby which claimed the life of a 60 year-old woman.

Geoffrey Vaki, who is attending a police chiefs conference in New Zealand, says PNG police must investigate and those involved, whether directly or indirectly in the death of the woman, must be held to account.

Earlier reports said the woman, a street vendor, had been fleeing from police when she ran onto a main road and was struck by an oncoming vehicle.

However, one witness said the woman had been fleeing from betel nut rangers when she was struck down by an on-coming vehicle.

The Police Commissioner of Papua New Guinea, Geoffrey Vaki.

The Police Commissioner of Papua New Guinea, Geoffrey Vaki. Photo: Dominic Kakas

Commissioner Vaki said he will inform the acting Police Commissioner, Awan Sete, to thoroughly investigate the incident and take the appropriate action.

He described the woman's death as unfortunate and sad.

The incident has drawn widespread criticism with many PNG blog sites posting a picture of the dead woman and a child weeping over her body.