By GABRIEL FITO
THE East Sepik capital Wewak came to a standstill yesterday as fear spread of more trouble following the killing of Wewak police chief Snr Insp Charles Parinjo, The National reports.
By midday, all shops, businesses and government offices had closed as police announced that they had picked up nine suspects – one on the night of the killing on Saturday and eight at 2am yesterday.
Public transport also stopped running in fear of retaliation from aggrieved relatives.
Provincial police commander Snr Insp Vincent Pokas said the nine suspects were detained at an undisclosed area for safety reasons.
Police believed the killing was premeditated and called on the residents of the Kaindi area, where the killing took place, to cooperate with police by handing in other suspects and offering information that will enable a successful conviction.
Pokas described Parinjo as a “no-nonsense and a disciplined officer” whose sudden death had left a gap for police in East Sepik province
He said Parinjo had initiated a number of projects for East Sepik police, including the K10 million Yawasoro police housing project, the new Wewak police station, Nuigo police barracks and was in the process of erecting a new Angoram police station when he was killed.
East Sepik Governor Peter Wararu wants to ban the sale of alcohol in the province for six months following a rise in liquor-related lawless activities in the province, including the death of Parinjo.
He told a gathering at Kaindi YC hall yesterday that even though alcohol contributed K1.1 million in revenue, there was no other way out of the increasing law and order problems.
Former Northern divisional police commander Giossi Labi yesterday expressed his sympathy to the young officer’s family, and urged the Madang, East Sepik and Sandaun (West Sepik) provincial governments to impose a ban on alcohol.
“Human lives are irreplaceable and losing a human life in such situation is not on,” he said.
“I strongly condemn the killing. We can no longer entertain liquor for the sake of making money without educating consumers to avoid causing disturbance to the communities.
“If liquor is alleged to be the cause of his death, Madang, East Sepik and West Sepik provinces need to consider imposing a liquor ban. If Morobe can do it, why not the others?”
Labi had at one stage appointed Parinjo as Angoram police station commander.
He was later appointed as Wewak police station commander.
The East Sepik Ministers Fraternal had planned a three-day pray and fast programme starting today for peace in the province.