Rabaul Queen court proceedings reopen in PNG

11:59 am on 5 March 2019

Court proceedings have reopened into Papua New Guinea's deadliest maritime disaster.

The Rabaul Queen

The Rabaul Queen Photo: Supplied

The Rabaul Queen inter-island ferry sank seven years ago with an official death toll of 172 although many believe this figure to be higher.

After the ship owner and captain were cleared of manslaughter charges in 2017, the public prosecutor discontinued proceedings.

However, PNG's Justice Minister and Attorney General said the public solicitor last week commenced civil negligence proceedings for which they are calling on survivors and victims' families to come forward.

Davis Steven said he's also seeking to have the criminal prosecution against the shipping company and captain reopened.

"Justice must be seen to be done. That's an important tenet of the rule of law and in Papua New Guinea I think that is a very important principal and commitment of government and it must be upheld especially in these times when we have an issue about public confidence in government and its commitment to [the] rule of law."

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