​Doctors issue ultimatum over police brutality issue

Will residents in the nation's capital pay for the abuse that a medical officer suffered at the hands of policemen?

Dr Newman Berry, a Resident Medical Officer (RMO) attached to the Obstetrics & Gynaecology Services, was allegedly attacked by drunken policemen last Wednesday night, without any form of reasoning.

The National Doctors Association is now demanding that the Royal PNG Constabulary immediately identify, charge and dismiss the perpetrators. If this demand is not met within 48 hours, all NDA members in Port Moresby/NCD will stand down from duty.

“Doctors will cover for dire emergencies only during this time,” says NDA president Dr James Naipao.

“NDA strongly condemns this sort of inhumane behaviour towards fellow citizens of this country.

“We are sick and tired of hearing case after case of police brutality.”

The Association is frustrated that a young doctor, who has spent the last seven years in training (after Grade 12), is now nursing severe injuries and psychological trauma.

Dr Naipao says: “Such serious actions must have penalties associated with, and the precedence must be set to avoid future similar situations.”

As of 3pm today (June 7), the NDA is giving the RPNGC 48 hours to deal with the perpetrators. If no favourable response is received by Friday, June 9, at 3pm, then about 145 doctors based in POM and NCD will stand down from duty.

(Members of the National Doctors Association with Dr Newman Berry, second left, during a press conference today)

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Carmella Gware