Kokopo arrests

VIDEO: Detained soldiers leave suspended

This comes after three serving defence force soldiers allegedly associated themselves with a political candidate.


Meredith Kuusa reports


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​Police verifying confiscated election materials

Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato told Loop PNG today that police are still checking the materials confiscated.  

ENB Provincial Election Manager, Joap Voivoi, told Loop PNG that police investigation is still ongoing and the election materials confiscated are yet to be confirmed.

National Alliance Party General Secretary, Joyce Grant, said the report on social media of the party supporters detained with ballot papers was untrue.

“We do not print ballot papers,” Grant said.

Kokopo arrests: Election manager confirms documents’ validity

Provincial Police Commander (PPC) Joseph Tabali said the provincial election manager, Joap Voivoi, was called in to confirm the validity of the documents when he was surprised to see tally sheets and electoral roll forms.

Police are now liaising with the Electoral Commissioner for the appropriate charges to be laid against the soldiers.

“PNGDF heads in Port Moresby have been made aware of the situation,” states Tabali.

He adds that they are now waiting on arrangements to be made for the soldiers to return to Port Moresby soon for further questioning.

​Gamato warns public about fake news

This follows a viral post last night on social media about defence personnel being involved in alleged hijacking and transporting of ballot papers into Kokopo, East New Britain Province.

Electoral Commissioner Patilius Gamato says these type of online posts are dangerous as they can cause tensions and unnecessary panic on ground.

He says no ballot papers were released as yet for Kokopo.

The public is being called on to be careful as the elections is an important democratic process.

​Kokopo police intercept flight, detain soldiers

Provincial Police Commander, Joseph Tabali, confirms that this came about after they received information alleging that some soldiers were on the flight upon a candidate’s request.

It was claimed that the flight was sponsored by National Alliance endorsed candidate for Namatanai, Walter Schnaubelt.

All 23 of them disembarked from the plane and were taken to the Kokopo Police Station where they were searched and questioned.

Police found out that three were soldiers of the PNG Defence Force.

​Kokopo arrests: NA denies social media report

NA Party General Secretary, Joyce Grant, today told Loop PNG that the report on social media is untrue.

“We do not print ballot papers,” Grant said.

She said the materials confiscated were posters and scrutineer forms for Walter Schnaubelt, NA Party endorsed candidate for Namatanai Open in New Ireland Province.

“I was the one who sent the materials as the party administrator.”   

But she confirmed that of the 40 people brought into Kokopo Police Station on Sunday, none were charged after being questioned.