Vanuatu daily news digest | 2 October 2012Posted: October 2, 2012
The Police Commissioner saga reaches new heights of mismanagement. Having done nothing about the suspension of Joshua Bong as Police Commissioner, and acting without a Chairman of the Police Service Commission (PSC), the Council of Ministers (who should have nothing to do with it) decided on Sunday, as Bong’s contract was ending, that Bong ought to be returned to the position of Police Commissioner. They re-appointed him for five years, “after a three year review.” Does that mean a total of eight years?
No mention has been made of the reason for which Bong was suspended. This is said to be due to a conflict of interest to Bong between Bong’s position and his running a private security business. He has “successfully sought legal redress”, reports Daily Post today. Do we assume from this he proved mutiny against those bringing his private security force to the attention of the PSC? Or just mismanagement on the part of everyone? The judgements of the two weekend court sittings have not yet been published. The PSC has declared itself happy with the re-appointment of Bong. Vanuatu seems to be without an effective administration at present.
Prime Minister Sato Kilman has been mentioning the Matthew and Hunter issue at the United Nations. Kilman has been telling the General Assembly: “We must continue to uphold the notion that the rule of law should not be used as an instrument of powerful nations to coerce weak and small nations”. We thoroughly agree, PM. How about continuing to uphold this notion in your Government’s foreign policy on West Papua? The full text of PM Kilman’s speech can be downloaded here, or you can watch his address on the UN Webcast website.
AusAID has donated photocopiers and laptops for the Electoral Commission. Acting Australian High Commissioner Charlene Watego said that Australia was always willing to help Vanuatu to promote effective governance through free and fair elections.
The World Bank and the Government of Japan is helping Vanuatu with tsunami warning equipment for Port Vila and Luganville. The equipment donation is part of an overall World Bank disaster risk reduction program in the Pacific.