Prime Minister Marape Vows Police Discipline Reform

Tuesday 13 February, 2024

Prime Minister Hon James Marape  in Parliament. (picture credit: Parliament Media).

Prime Minister and Treasurer Hon. James Marape   told Parliament that  the ‘Black Wednesday”  chaos, resulted from police pay disputes, not military involvement.

He was responding to questions without notice in Parliament,  from the Member for Moresby North East, John Kaupa, in relations to the January 10  unrest.  .

“This was not a glitch, it was non-configuration,” Marape declared, saying the incident was on public servant salary updates failing, leading to unintended deductions.

 “Because of this,” he emphasized, “police officers stepped down from work due to pay cuts.”

Mr Marape firmly dispelled rumors of military engagement. “Although some members were present,” he clarified, “their leadership was not involved, and the Correctional Service members were also not involved.”

The Prime Minister pinpointed the root cause as a lack of command. “What happened on the 10th of January,” he stated, “was an absence of command in the metropolitan command here in the city.”

PM Marape revealed, “I was there at the Manasupe Haus when the office was under attack. The defense force wanted to come in and nullify the situation, but I called the Acting Commander and told him we will handle this without calling in the Defence force.”

“I told them not to come into the crossfire, the police would handle it. Eventually, common sense prevailed, and they withdrew those few who tried to enter Manasupe Haus.”

Mr Marape referenced the 2021 attack on the White House. “The most secure building on Earth was attacked,” he reminded everyone.

“We will not take this lightly, we will go on and fix police discipline and soldier discipline.”

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