The National,Wednesday18 January 2012
By YVONNE HAIP
POLICE in Jiwaka have denied taking the law into their own hands, claiming that last Tuesday’s event at the Jiwaka Transitional Authority office in Banz had been peaceful.
It was reported that police had allegedly assaulted authority director Nicholas Kuman and stoned the administration building.
The police officers reportedly did that after the administration failed to give them the promised funding for their festive season operations in the province.
Acting provincial police commander Billy Kombel said there was no stoning and “nothing of the nature reported took place, nothing like that happened”.
He admitted police officers had been frustrated because they were not given the promised money but denied any confrontation instigated by his officers.
“All police did was front up at the JTA office, waited for the director and then negotiated in a peaceful manner,” he said.
Kombel said the police were unhappy because K200,000 allocated to enforce law and order in the province had not been made available.
He said they approached Kuman and were told that of the money, K51,000 had been used by the peace and good order committee.
He said Kuman had agreed to pay the remaining K149,000 and instructed police to draw up another budget.
Kombel said the money would cover expenses for the Christmas and New Year operations as well as pre-election operations that were under way and general law and order enforcement.
With limited manpower and resources, Jiwaka police consists of at least 100 police officers using eight vehicles.
Auxiliary Const Jack Goi, from Jimi police station and Nombrol Wimba from Nodugul police station, said they were fed up with such delays, and wanted the money released.
The Christmas and New Year operations have been merged with pre-election operations that will end on March 31.
The operation hopes to cut down lawlessness leading into the general election.