THE question of how one spells the name of PNG most wanted prison escapee and robbery suspect is far from being a settled matter.
Yesterday, at a press conference to announce the capture of escapee William Nanua Kapris, Police Commissioner Gari Baki insisted the suspect’s name was spelt without the ‘r’.
“He is Kapis,” Mr Baki said in reply to a question about the correct spelling of the prisoner’s name.
Speaking during the press conference, Mr Baki pronounced the name without the ‘r’.
But a media released prepared by his media advisers and signed by Mr Baki had the name spelt with ‘r’.
Asked about the lack of consistency, police media personnel said they were going by what the National Court judge had ruled.
When the suspect was first caught after the dramatic bank robberies in Madang and Kerema in 2008, his name was spelt Kapis.
But during an appearance before Justice Panuel Mogish last year, the prisoner stood up and told the judge that his name was Kapris, spelt with ‘r’.
As there was no objection, Justice Mogish ordered that the prisoner’s name be spelt as he wished.
That did not please Commerce and Industry Minister Gabriel Kapris, who insisted the prisoner was Kapis.
The minister is considering legal action to establish the correct spelling of the prisoner’s name.
A number of people The National spoke to by phone in Kimbe, where the prisoner grew up, said they know him by the name Kapis, without the ‘r’.
“I’m surprised that he has named himself Kapris. He is probably playing a bit of mischief.
“The old man whom he took the name from is Kapis. He is still here,” a Kimbe resident, who asked not to be named, said.
Another resident, who is from Sepik but lives in Kimbe, said “William Kapis is his name. There is no Kapris here. I don’t know why he asked the judge to put the ‘r’ in his name.”