By CLIFFORD FAIPARIK, The National PNG
POLICE Minister Bryan Kramer, pictured, has accused Police Commissioner Gari Baki of protecting “corrupt politicians” by sitting on their files and not investigating them in the past four years.
He was responding to Baki’s statement yesterday that he had the files of 40 MPs on both sides of the House to investigate.
Kramer said: “He has been sitting on the files and protecting corrupt politicians. And now he wants to investigate them.
Where was he all these years? He has those files all this time. In fact there were more complaints against MPs during his time in office and he has been interfering with and frustrating investigations. He had four years to do that.”
Kramer said Baki should have delegated the investigations of the MPs to other qualified senior officers.
“There are other police officers who can investigate these MPs for alleged fraud or alleged official corruption,” he said.
He said investigation into the 40 MPs “will still proceed”.
Kramer also defended Francis Tokura’s appointment as acting Police Commissioner “in the best interest of Bougainville and Papua New Guinea”.
“His appointment was on merit and to provide stability for a peaceful outcome during the referendum,” he said.
Baki however claimed that the change in police leadership was to “protect those in power”.
“We have investigation files on some 40 MPs in Government and Opposition,” he said.
“This includes a good number of ministers in cabinet. Will the Government give us the support and cooperation to prosecute these cases?.” He said the constabulary was only as good as political masters.
“The issue is political will, determination, genuine desire to fight corruption and support for the constabulary,” Baki said.
He said he and his two deputy police commissioners were preparing to exit the police service.
“We are not fighting to hold onto office. But we want to see the police force and officers protected. We want to see the police force free from political manipulation and interference.”