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Confrontation between PNG Defence Force Members and Police


There was a confrontation between a couple of PNGDF personnel and Police this morning in front of the Boroko Police Station in the National Capital District.

This stemmed from an incident last Saturday which involved an off-duty PNGDF member.

An official complaint was lodged at the Boroko Police Station by the PNGDF member yesterday where he alleged misconduct by certain members of the NCD Police.

The Divisional Commander for NCD and Central Assistant Commissioner Anthony Wagambie Jnr had directed yesterday that the complaint be facilitated by a Commissioned Officer to ensure urgency with prioritising and dealing with the complaint. 

This morning the soldier turned up at the Boroko Police Station where he was taken to the Police Station Commander.

PSC Boroko was already in the middle of assisting the complainant put together his statement when a confrontation erupted between certain members of the PNGDF and a lone Police unit.

The five members of the police unit were outnumbered and were disarmed and their weapons and the Police issued vehicle was taken off them and driven away by the soldiers .

Soldiers and Police sustained injuries during the confrontation.  

No one was shot as widely speculated in the social media.

A soldier who was left behind was apprehended and later handed over to the Military Police by senior police officers . 


Statement from Divisional Commander NCD & Central Assistant Commissioner of Police Anthony Wagambie Jr:


We have met with senior officers and NCOs of the PNGDF this morning. 

I commend Lt Colonel Aruma, Director Land Operations,  Director Military Police Major Dorpar, all the senior officers, NCOs and members of the PNGDF who responded quickly and positively to the incident at the Boroko Police Station. 

My officers and I were at Boroko Police Station where we met with the PNGDF heirachcy to ensure the situation was contained and did not escalate. 

I assure the members of the PNGDF that the complaint registered by one of our soldiers from an incident over the weekend is being dealt with. I have given directives for the complaint to be transferred from PSC Boroko to Internal Investigation Unit  Boroko. The previous incident leading  to the soldier laying a formal complaint is being investigated by Internal Investigations Unit. 

We have a very effective Internal Investigation Unit. Since taking office in late 2019, my management team and I have given full backing to Internal Investigations to ensure all reports of misconduct by Police are thoroughly investigated.  

The fact that while the report was being taken, a confrontation ensued outside the Police Station is uncalled for. As members of the PNGDF, discipline must be exercised at all times.

The PNGDF has a very colourful history which we are all proud of. We see the PNGDF as our strength,  not only for external security but for internal security back up when the  need arises.

Therefore whilst this is being looked into, I will also appeal to the PNGDF leadership to ensure units are kept intact and for necessary action to be taken on those who assaulted and commandeered a Police allocated vehicle. 

Two wrongs do not make a right and as disciplined offices we must all work within our codes of conduct.

I want to assure members of the public, PNGDF and police personnel,  that the situation is now under control.  

Police and PNGDF hierarchy have met and we have resolved to have this incident dealt with at the earliest. 

I have respect for the PNGDF and the members who serve in it.

What happened today does not reflect the Military as a whole. This was from individuals who acted alone without the knowledge of their command element. This incident  must not tarnish the reputation of the good men and women of the PNGDF.

I thank the PNGDF senior officers and Military Police for ensuring the police vehicle and one firearm was returned to Boroko Police Station. 

We will continue to work closely with our counterparts. 

All Police units are performing normal daily operations.

The Police and PNGDF must ensure cordial relations exist for the benefit of the country.

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