Doctor’s attack not taken lightly: Minister

Minister for Defence, Solan Mirisim, confirmed on the floor of parliament that the alleged PNG Defence Force officer who attacked Dr Dean Wahembari is currently in police custody.

Minister Mirisim said PNG Defence Force maintains zero tolerance towards violence and will work closely with the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary for justice to prevail.

The Ear, Nose and Throat registrar was attacked at North Waigani by a PNG Defence Force soldier and his cohorts on May 19.

Dr Wahembari sustained trauma to his right eye, loss of vision and a fractured nose.

The doctor’s attack was raised in last week’s parliament session by Member for Ijivitari, Richard Masere.

Masere questioned Minister Mirisim about the credibility of military training and recruitment and the Defence Force stance regarding this matter.

Minister Mirisim said PNG Defence Force condemns this act in the strongest terms and confirmed formal steps for investigations have already been undertaken.

He said the officer in question has had past records – similar in nature – and disciplined.

The PNGDF this time is not taking this matter lightly and will work closely with the police.

Minister Mirisim said the officer was apprehended by Military Police and handed over to civil police awaiting investigations.

It is believed that the instigator was upset over the passing of his father last year, who was managed by the Ear, Nose and Throat team.

National Doctors Association President James Naipao confirmed the instigator’s father suffered stage 4 cancer of the tongue.

Carolyn Ure