Monday, January 30, 2012

All quiet on army front


ALL is quiet in the Papua New Guinea Defence Force throughout the country as the man who led the failed mutiny is held in custody, The National reports.
At around 2am last Thursday, Yaura Sasa, a retrenched colonel in his early 60s, led a group of 30 armed soldiers and placed the commanding officer of the Taurama Barracks, Lt-Col Francis Kari under house arrest.
At around 5am, the group drove to the Defence Force headquarters at Murray Barracks in hired vehicles and took control of the gates as Sasa claimed to have taken over as the commanding officer of the force.
The rebel soldiers placed the commander, Brig-Gen Francis Agwi, and other senior military officers under house arrest. Among them was Col Walter Enuma.
However, the situation was stabilised when the group was disbanded and Agwi resumed control and command.
It had been alleged that several members of parliament funded the operation while Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare has admitted appointing Sasa as commander of the Defence Force.
At around 6pm last Thursday, Deputy Prime Minister and acting Defence Minister Belden Namah, accompanied by six ministers and politicians, visited the barracks and met with top military officials.
As soon as the mutiny was quashed, police started looking for Sasa.
Sasa was arrested at 8pm on Saturday and questioned yesterday Sunday morning. He was charged with one count of incitement to mutiny.
He appeared before a special court and had been remanded in custody at the Bomana jail.
Military establishments in the city, including Taurama and Murray barracks, were quiet while security was beefed up with armed guards at the gates to the barracks.
A visit to other establishments such as the Defence Force air wing and the maritime base also showed the situation was quiet and under control.
Reports received from other military barracks at Igam, Moem, Kiunga, Vanimo and Kerowil, in the Western
Highlands, indicated everything was under the control of Agwi, who resumed office 11 hours after the mutiny started.

No comments:

Post a Comment