Application to dismiss warrant against govt head adjourned

An application to dismiss the warrant of arrest issued for Treasury Secretary Dairi Vele has been further adjourned by the Waigani District Court.

This is due to a stay order that was issued by the National Court on October 14 by Justice Ere Kariko.

Police Commissioner Gari Baki’s lawyer, Nicholas Tame, moved for the adjournment just after lunch today when the matter returned to court after it was adjourned from September 22.

Tame and Vele’s lawyer Tiffany Twivey both appeared before Magistrate Cosmos Bidar where they agreed to an adjournment to November 26.

Tame said the application before Magistrate Bidar relates to other matters before the National Court.

In the meantime, the stay against the arrest of Vele that was agreed to by the Police Commissioner’s lawyer and Twivey on July 30 is maintained to preserve the status-quo till after November 2.

Director for the National Fraud and Anti-Corruption Directorate Matthew Damaru and his assistant Timothy Gitua on July 22 obtained a warrant of arrest against Secretary Vele.

This was to answer to allegations surrounding the release of funds to an Israeli company, for the purchase of two generator sets in 2014 that had since been installed by PNG Power in Port Moresby and Lae. 

On October 12, Damaru was arrested and charged with lying under oath however on October 14 he succeeded in getting restraining orders against the Police Commissioner.

The charge against Damaru relates to an affidavit he swore to and facts on OS 483 of 2015, a proceeding of contempt of court against Baki that is still before the National Court.

On October 14, interim orders were issued against the Police Commissioner, his servants and agents from investigating Damaru, Gitua and their lawyer McRonald Nale.

Justice Kariko also ordered against Commissioner Baki pursuing any criminal prosecution against the three or until further orders of the court.

Justice Kariko also ordered a stay against the proceeding at the District Court (CB No.8869/15) in which Damaru was charged with lying under oath pursuant to section 197 of the Criminal Code Act.

This is because the National Court still has to determine facts in that contempt of court proceeding and determine the affidavit of Damaru. 

Sally Pokiton