Over 400 soldiers in Highlands

Over 400 PNG Defence Force soldiers are currently up in the western part of the Highlands region.

In a media briefing yesterday, PNGDF chief-of-staff, Captain Philip Polewara, said the soldiers are assisting police with the law and order situation.

Following the June 14th rampage in Mendi, additional security forces were deployed to prevent further unlawful behaviour.

The PNGDF chief-of-staff, Captain Philip Polewara, said the forces are monitoring entry and exit points into the town.

“The soldiers have been conferred the special constabulary powers by the police commissioner under the SOE callout, therefore have the powers to arrest and employ part of the functions of the civil police under the controller of the SOE,” he stated.

Captain Polewara further said the men have been spread across the affected provinces of Enga, Southern Highlands and Tari.

Meantime, Captain Polewara relayed to the media some outstanding issues, among which included the assault of former NCD metropolitan police boss, Ben Turi.

He said while Turi released the service personnel on goodwill, the PNGDF hierarchy has since dismissed the officer involved.

Also, another service personnel has been dismissed from the military after he was found guilty by his command for being involved in a stealing incident in Western Province.

(PNGDF chief-of-staff, Captain Philip Polewara)

Carmella Gware