Friday, April 15, 2011

Mob defends Wararu

Cop car damaged, detective assaulted by Sepik villagers

AN attempt by police to arrest East Sepik Governor Peter Wararu in
Wewak yesterday turned nasty when an angry mob from his electorate
chased away policemen and hurled missiles at the vehicle smashing all
its windows, The National reports.
Consequently, a local police detective, investigating a series of
allegations against the East Sepik governor, was assaulted and hit
with the end of a bush knife and lost consciousness.
Police last night said police detective Ron Poki was nursing wounds at
his Wewak home.
Poki was on his way to meet Wararu when he was allegedly stopped and assaulted.
The detective and two others, believed to be his colleagues, left the
vehicle at Haniak village and escaped on foot while the vehicle was
worked on by angry villagers.
The vehicle was about to be set ablaze when Nongori village ward
member Benedict Poriefi intervened and had it moved to his village for
Acting Police Commissioner Anthony Wagambie last night confirmed the
incident in Wewak.
"The detective was investigating allegations against the governor; the
people's actions were uncalled for."
Wagambie said: "The officer was badly beaten and lost consciousness."
The National, however, was told by the villagers that they were angry
after receiving information that Wararu, who is Yangoru-Saussia MP,
was going to be arrested and charged at 5pm yesterday.
The arrest, they said, would mean a stop-work on a vital road project
from Tangori to other isolated villages in the Numbo and East Yangoru
After receiving information of Wararu's impending arrest, the people
were about to drive down to Wewak to witness his arrest at 5pm when
they saw a police 10-seater Landcruiser, believed to be that of former
East Sepik police chief Snr Insp Charles Parinjo, heading in their
Wagambie said the police vehicle was damaged with the policeman's
personal belongings, including a laptop and confidential documents,
Local Haniak villagers last night also confirmed the incident.
They said the police detective was hit on the side of his head with
the back of a bush knife and lost consciousness.
"The personal items must be returned immediately to the rightful
owner," Wagambie warned last night.
The East Sepik governor met a huge crowd, mostly men, at Tangori
police station last night after the women and children had returned
home and urged them not to take the law into their own hands.
He told supporters outside the police station that he had been
informed that he was going to be arrested after Parinjo, but did not
know the reason.
Wararu said if he had committed a crime, then he should be called in
by police for a record of interview and not to be treated like a
common criminal as he was a leader.
The governor said his electorate had witnessed minimal development in
the last six years because of continuous court challenges.
He said with only 12 months away from the next elections, he wanted to
bring progress his electorate by building roads and other
infrastructure development.
"There should be no hindrances caused by intending candidates or
police politics," Wararu told his people last night.
He also attributed the arrest of Parinjo and his planned arrest to a
recent incident involving Michael Somare Jnr.
The governor also expressed dissatisfaction at the acting police
commissioner's direction for his men to arrest politicians.
Wararu said he would join other MPs to ask Prime Minister Sir Michael
Somare to have Wagambie removed from the top cop job.
Meanwhile, Parinjo was last night escorted by West Sepik provincial
police commander Tobby Hamago and his men to Vanimo for his court
hearing on Monday.
East Sepik PPC Vincent Pokas was understood to be out of the province
and could not be reached for comments.

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