The National, Tuesday 12th February, 2013
THE government is seeking to appoint a highly credible candidate to head and restore the good image of the PNG High Commission in Honiara, Solomon Islands, Foreign Affairs Minister Rimbink Pato says.
Pato said in a statement yesterday that the PNG High Commission in Solomon Islands had been plagued with controversies for several years, which had defaced the country’s image among the Melanesian and South Pacific island nations.
He said the controversial and embarrassing diplomatic glitches by former heads of the PNG High Commission had brought disrepute and tarnished the image of PNG in the neighbouring Solomon Islands.
He said the government decided to consider and appoint a Papua New Guinean with an unblemished record, reputation, status and high standing in the community as high commissioner.
“Therefore, the government through the National Executive Council (NEC) had approached and offered the commissioner’s post to Justice Catherine Davani, incumbent judge of the National and Supreme Courts.”
The minister said the government wanted to appoint the best candidate to restore confidence and credibility.
It was reported that the NEC had appointed Davani, PNG’s first national female judge, as the new high commissioner to Solomon Islands, which Pato confirmed but said the government was still awaiting her response and acceptance after consultation with her immediate family.
“Justice Davani has not accepted the offer and until she accepts the government’s offer, she will continue to perform her judicial functions and responsibilities independently and without fear or favour,” Pato said.