Cops asked to remove officer


THE Government has asked police to remove acting Insurance Commissioner Salamo Elema from office because of his refusal to abide by a National Court ruling which declared his appointment illegal.
Elema had challenged in court a decision by Public Service Minister Sir Puka Temu to revoke his appointment as the acting insurance commissioner.
On Sept 21, Justice Leka Nablu ruled that Elema was illegally occupying the office, implying that he should vacate it.
Department of Personnel Management Secretary John Kali on Oct 28 wrote to Police Commissioner Gari Baki seeking police assistance to remove Elema, who continued to refuse to vacate the office.
In the letter to Baki, Kali said: “I am therefore seeking your assistance to ensure that he vacates the office immediately as he is currently in office making executive decisions contrary to his status and using Government facilities to his benefit.”
Chief Secretary Isaac Lupari told The National yesterday that the Government was concerned that Elema’s defiance of the court order, and Kali’s directive, would negatively impact on the insurance industry.
Lupari said Elema was illegitimately occupying the office and making executive decisions which involved the use of public money and resources.
Lupari said he had written to Treasurer Patrick Pruaitch to immediately appoint an acting insurance commissioner and advertise the position.

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