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Papua New Guineans are having differing opinions on a court ruling last Friday that nullified the appointment of David Manning as Commissioner of Police.
Judge David Cannings ruled that Manning was not suitable and qualified to occupy that position because he did not have the necessary tertiary qualification- a criteria set by the Public Service Commission.
Former police officer and High Commissioner to Solomon Islands Fred Yakasa and sidelined Deputy Police Commissioner Human Resources Sylvester Kalaut took the matter to court and were successful.
Manning has accepted the court decision and said he would seek legal advice whether to appeal.
Public on social media were quite outraged though with comments from Justice Minister Bryan Kramer who was Police Minister then when Manning was appointed.
Kramer has said the National Executive Council would correct the clause and reappoint Manning.
The public felt that was corrupt.
There are however commentators who felt Manning has done a tremendous job so far and that qualifications should not be a mandatory criteria for consideration and selection.
East Sepik Governor Allan Bird has made comments on social media to restructure the police department by having a Police Commissioner who heads the operations and a department secretary who heads the policy and administration.
Commentators view were that this was short sighted, unnecessary, reactive and lacks merit.
Bird has been seen as he is supporting Kramer to defend NEC’s blunder by amending clauses and called it as corrupt to serve the interest of an individual and not for the common good of society as stipulated by law.
Police Minister William Onglo has said they would comply with the court ruling and would take immediate and necessary steps to appoint a commissioner.
The court has given Manning until January 29 to vacate the office.
He was appointed on December 2019.