Baisu breakout raises crime fears in Enga

National, Normal


POLICE in the Enga are worried about an imminent rise in law and order problems in the province as a result of the jail breakout in Baisu, Western Highlands province.
According to Enga provincial police commander, Insp Martin Lakari, this was because almost half of the 84 remandees, who dashed for freedom, were from Enga and had committed serious crimes like murder.
He said since the province had no proper lock-up of its own, all its remandees were sent to Baisu in Mt Hagen.
He blamed Correctional Services officers at Baisu for the escape as police had tried so hard to capture these remandees.
He said it had been a “waste of time and effort” on the part of the police, and to round them up again demanded more (time and effort).
Insp Lakari said the breakout had occurred after the prisoners saw that not all warders had taken up their positions during a change of guard.
He said this could have been avoided if warders had been on time, and described it as “incredible and unbelievable” on the part of the warders.
Meanwhile, Western Highlands provincial police commander Supt Kaiglo Ambane said no further arrests had been made following the recapturing of 21 prisoners after the breakout.
He urged the public to come forward and help police.
Security personnel in other Highlands provinces have been alerted and are on the lookout for the escapees.
The 84 prisoners escaped on Tuesday at around 2.30pm, by cutting through the security fences, when the prison guards were changing shifts.
It has also been reported that CS officers did not go in search of the remandees right after the breakout because of heavy rain.