Delay in fraud cases worries Sir Gibbs


DEPUTY Chief Justice Sir Gibbs Salika says he is concerned about the delay in some fraud cases that are caused by judicial review proceedings.
He said this at the Waigani National Court on Monday when lawyer Thomas Tapo, representing Gulf Governor Havila Kavo, sought an adjournment of his fraud case to Sept 19.
“They are matters like the matters of Eremas Wartoto listed and waiting in this court, the judicial review proceedings is going to slow down the matters before the court.
“The matters were from 2014 and that is why I am concerned at how long it is going to take,” Sir Gibbs said.
“There are effects of prolonged wait and it will affect State witnesses involved in each case. Some witnesses will die and some witnesses will lose their thinking capacities.”
The judge directed Tapo to start serving documents on the parties concerning the judicial review so that the case would not be delayed further.
Kavo, 53, from Herekela village in Ihu, Gulf, was charged with misappropriation involving K783,195.70 belonging to the State and Gulf provincial government.
Police alleged that between Jan 5 and Jan 27, a Bank South Pacfici cheque for K1,019,658 was ready for collection at the Mineral Resources Development Company (MRDC) office in Waigani as dividend payment to the Gulf provincial government.
The managing director and general manager of Gulf Economic Development Authority went to the MRDC office and allegedly collected the cheque upon the instructions of the governor (Kavo), who was the chairman of the authority.
After the cheque was deposited into the authority’s account, a total of K783,195.70 was allegedly withdrawn.
It was further alleged that the withdrawal was done upon Kavo’s instructions without the knowledge of the provincial assembly and provincial executive council members.
Kavo appeared in court on a K5000 extended bail.

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