Police breaching people’s human rights, says judge


People’s human rights are breached by police officers when they force people into police vehicles without being told why, says Deputy Chief Justice Sir Gibbs Salika.
“It’s about time people should be taught their basic human rights because there have been a lot of cases where police officers have breached the rights of the people,” he said.
Sir Gibbs said this after a youth, Steven Adira, 20, from Tatana village, outside Port Moresby, gave evidence in the trial of five police officers charged with the murder of a man two years ago.
Adira was the first State witness called to give evidence against the five officers. The court heard that on Jan 17, 2015, Adira was in the village when he got a phone call from a woman.
He told the court that the woman arranged for them to meet at Ela Beach.
The court heard that when Adira arrived at the agreed location, the woman left him with a police man who forced him into a police vehicle.
Adira told the court that he was assaulted by policemen in the vehicle before they headed to Tatana to pursue other suspects including the deceased.
The court heard that Adira was later taken into custody.
Sir Gibbs said that the actions of the police officers breached Adira’s human rights.
“Police must tell you why you are being taken into the motor vehicle,” he said.
“You have the right to refuse to go into the motor vehicle.
“That is because you are exercising your human right.
“Many of our people do not know that.”