Fraud squad kept Baki in the dark, says Atiyafa

The fraud investigators acted unethically and irrationally by withholding information from the Commissioner of Police, said Police Minister Robert Atiyafa in a press statement.

“Since assuming office last year, the Commissioner acted professionally and reasonably by giving ample time for the fraud investigators to appraise him, as head of the organisation, on all matters investigated by the National Fraud and Anti-Corruption Directorate, including the PM’s case.

But detectives assigned to these cases withheld information, said Atiyafa.

This has raised a certain level of suspicion of bias in these investigations.

“By snubbing the Office of the Commissioner, the actions of the NFACD was deemed as improper and tantamount to an act of insubordination, which is a direct breach of the Constabulary’s Standing Orders (CSO) and Section 20 of the Police Force Act 1998.

“Despite repeated calls for the NFACD to appraise the Commissioner on these high profile investigations, they opted to remain defiant and non-cooperative, causing the RPNGC management to become suspicious over their operations.

“The arrest of the Prime Minister’s lawyer Tiffany Twivey, Attorney-General Ano Pala and Justice Bernard Sakora were covertly orchestrated without the knowledge of the Commissioner, who was literally kept in the dark and was unable to comment in the media when questioned. They (NFACS) caused a major embarrassment for the Commissioner.

“Because of this act of insubordination coupled with allegations of exorbitant sums of monies being paid to certain members of the NFACS, the Commissioner used his powers under section 198 of the Police Force Act to suspend and refer them for investigations.

“I cannot pre-empt the details of these investigations but the allegations are serious warranting the actions taken by the Commissioner,” said the police minister.

(Picture: Director of the National Fraud and Anti-Corruption Directorate Matthew Damaru.)