BUSY ON POLICE REFORMS MR KRAMER?
by PAUL AMATIO
Good night Mr Kramer. Honorable or Dishonorable, time will tell I suppose but for me, it’s the later which I’ll stick with until proven (beyond reasonable doubt of course) otherwise.
Everyone who is reading this must please bear in mind that Bryan Kramer is the National Minister for Police in the government of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea, not some banana republic somewhere. It is therefore incumbent upon him to remember at all times that any comments he makes will have a bearing and reflection on the country. In his position, anything he says about his department will have an impact on the morale and performance of members of the RPNGC at all levels. I am a former policeman and I find his comments denigrating the RPNGC on the international media to be highly improper and grossly unbecoming of a Minister of State.
The Prime Minister must now step in and strip this ROGUE MINISTER of his portfolio and send him to the back benches.
What this person has done is a clear breach of State Security.
He has told the world that all senior police officers (that would be from Chief Inspector rank up to Commissioner) at our National Police Headquarters are thieves, organised gang members, drug dealers, gun runners, scoundrels and scammers. He goes further and states that many are also fraudsters. And they have enriched themselves at the expense of the Constabulary and the nation. WOW!!! Strong language Minister!
Has the Minister realised what his very well planned outburst in the international media has done to this country and the RPNGC? I should remind him here that the RPNGC has a 130 year history of serving with pride and distinction in the face of some of the toughest policing environments anywhere on this planet. And you, a little big mouthed nobody, come in and see fit to denigrate this institution of national pride? You should be ashamed of yourself.
Your comments are a serious breach of National Security because you have now told every criminal organisation in the world that come to PNG and you will get away scot free because our police are just like you. You are actively encouraging transnational crime. You are inviting organised criminals to come here and set up bases of operation in the full knowledge that because our top police officers are all corrupt and criminals, they will have protection and freedom to operate. Minister, did you stop for a minute to think of this?
You have also seriously undermined and demoralised all the hardworking, honest and upright members of the officer corps of the RPNGC in PHQ. There are around 100 or so senior officers full time at PHQ. According to you they are all corrupt thieves, organised gang members, drug dealers, gun runners, scoundrels, scammers and fraudsters. Are you sure of this?
I estimate the RPNGC to have a strength of around 8-9000 active members. How many of these are thieves, organised gang members, drug dealers, gun runners, scoundrels, scammers and fraudsters? How can you so blatantly tar all members of the RPNGC with the same brush?
Why are you so hell bent on painting a negative image of the Constabulary in public? We all know that every State body in PNG has some level of thieves, organised gang members, drug dealers, gun runners, scoundrels, scammers and fraudsters. And the RPNGC is no different. But to say the whole organisation is like this is grossly defamatory to many good and hardworking career cops.
I have read Mr Kramer’s post several times and I am unclear on the actual measures and steps he has taken. It is full of generalisations, accusations and plans. Nothing new there. If anyone doesn’t believe me, go back and read his post carefully and critically. It appears he has blocked me from FB pages he controls so a friend sent this to me. Jeez man, what is he scared of? You’re a politician, and criticism comes with the territory. So if you can’t take the heat, then get the hell out of the kitchen.
If his job in the opposition was to keep the public informed of the wrong doings of government, then as a minister, doesn’t he think it is more important to keep the public informed in that role? It’s called transparency and accountability. We don’t want in-depth reporting but some information on what he’s doing and why gives us (the public) the chance to critique and comment on them…unless of course, with him being a scientist and mastermind, he already knows it all and don’t need that.
Now I well and truly agree with his final realisation about the extent of corruption. But isn’t that why he got elected in the first place? He promised to uproot and weed it out? Are you now saying you were so naive that you walked in without knowing? There’re hundreds of posts from you everywhere on the web that would suggest otherwise.
It would be grossly stupid of anyone to ask the Minister to make any arrest. I heard he’s a reservist but the Commissioner recently sacked them all so he’s safe on that one now. I wonder if the Commissioner considered Kramer to be one of those crooked reservists when he made the decision?
Anyway the fact that he appears to have made the operations plan for police operations in Madang would make one think he’s a police commander. I’ll give due credit and say it is a good plan but perhaps he should have let one of the police commander’s (or even the Commissioner) take credit for it. After all, it’s not his job to run or plan a police operation or make arrests is it? But it seems he was not too busy working around the clock to plan that. Hmmm? I know as I have made police operations plans and orders and it takes more than a week. So did he stop the clock for this?
Now as police minister, nothing is stopping him from asking the commissioner to reinstate those officers who have left the force or been suspended and suspend or sack those who are still there but suspected to be rotten apples? I am hoping he is not planning on doing selective pruning. That may prove to be fatal for the tree. So following on from your assertions, are we now to take it that you have already identified those who are corrupt Minister?
Mr Kramer mentioned stealing from the force and quite specific about the type and location of this stealing when he mentions senior officers stealing from the police pension fund which is a direct reference to suspended ACP Sylvester Kalaut and Superintendent Bob Kerry. I’ll tell him here that Superintendent Bob Kerry is a friend who I and many others in and outside the RPNGC hold in very high regard. And I find this insinuation against him to be very offensive and insulting. Let me tell you Minister, that Bob is a very highly ethical person who has a solid Christian background and has been struggling to put his children to school by taking repeated bank loans (unlike some of your preferred officers). I doubt very much if he has touched a single toea of tainted money in his position.
Furthermore we must remember that their case is now before the courts hence the Minister’s comments are sub-judice as he has already formed a conviction of guilt on his part and is now publicly telling everyone that the two are guilty as charged. And by operation of the law, both officers are innocent until the court says otherwise. I hope he has read your post and he sues you for every last toea over it.
To add on to that, of all the frauds and thefts you have uncovered, which police officers have now been suspended, arrested and charged for these crimes? ZERO! From here, it looks like you’re being selective in your clean up and that is sending the wrong signals throughout the RPNGC.
You’re talking about police corruption and criminals in uniform so I was very, very surprised when you made no mention of the hundreds of millions of kina which have been wasted through the use of expensive hire cars. Don’t you think that an expense of K700+ per day or more is a good use of police funds especially when there is no need for it? Let me give you a couple of cases that I know of since I come from the area. Our good PPCs in Simbu, WHP and Jiwaka have been using hire cars as their command cars for well over 2 years now. And so are the Divisional Commander and his deputy. At K700+ per day, that is enough to buy them over 4 brand new cars each. And the same goes for other police commanders throughout PNG.
I am sure the Commissioner knows about this very well (as did his predecessor) but what has he done about it? NOTHING. I recall that certain documents about this were widely circulated on social media and copies were sent to Mr Kramer through inbox and email. His response was he wanted the originals. Come on man. They’re government documents and are readily available at the Finance or Treasury building. Did you he any effort to verify these allegations? I doubt it.
On the same subject of identifying crooked police officers or criminals in uniform, may I ask what the Minister has done about the allegations of rape and murder against the Commissioner Mr David Manning? Who has he appointed to conduct investigations into these allegations? If not, then why is he coming public about this whole matter at all? If he wants to clean the RPNGC, he has to start from the top, not the bottom or middle. Are we now to believe that he doesn’t want Manning to be investigated? Or is he immune because he is the Minister’s appointee?
The generalised comments about changes and reforms are just talk. No-one has seen any concrete policy directions or initiatives from your office. Your boast about improving police housing and accommodation is yet to be actualised. Your statement that you are reforming from the top down is baseless and equally meaningless when those changes were done corruptly and not in the interests of the RPNGC. For instance, Commissioner Gari Baki was changed with David Manning who has serious allegations of misconduct and criminal activities against him aside from the fact that he also lacked the qualifications as stipulated by the PSC under the PSMA for the position. I hope the Minister will recall that he publicly posted on Facebook that a tertiary degree was not a prerequisite for the Commissioner’s position. Well, I still have a copy of the newspaper advertisement for the position, in case he forgot.
Your acting DCP/Ops has now become embroiled in a serious allegation of improper conduct following the crash of the cocaine plane.
What have you, as Minister, done about this? Nothing as we all know. I would in fact go so far as to say that you might have aided and abetted him in tampering with evidence and perverting the course of justice when you turned a blind eye to the transference of the drugs from PNG territory to Australia. I believe there was a case in Australia where the AFP lost the case because the witnesses were brought in from one Sate to another and the trial judge ruled that this could be construed as an inducement. Now how will this case of evidence transference be upheld in an Australian court when we apparently have a very weak police force as you have now trumpeted at the top of your lungs in an Australian newspaper?
I also have a sneaky suspicion that perhaps your comments are designed to justify the transferring of the drugs out of PNG into Australia because of our poor, corrupt, criminal police force. So how can we expect criminals to prosecute criminals in PNG right? Don’t you have hundreds of competent and highly qualified commissioned officers to choose from to head this investigation instead of rubbishing every single one of them?
So essentially what you have been telling us is that you don’t care about the real actions within the law that have to be done to fix the RPNGC. You only care about what is done according to the whims of Bryan Kramer, irrespective of whether it is good process, within the law or within acceptable standards. Forget about the constables and other ranks. Let me suggest that your appointees are the problem, not the other ranks. Get good officers in place and they will fix the lower ranks.
My final comment on your statement is that this is just another one of your bullshit diversionary tactics to keep people hanging in there hoping for something when in actual fact NOTHING will be done. No surprise there for some of us because we all know this.
Want my advice? Simple! (1) Suspend the Commissioner and Mr Yamasombi. (2) Institute a full and thorough investigation of all the allegations against them. (3) If they are proven innocent, well and good, reinstate them. If not, terminate them. (4) Get officers from outside NCD to do this in the interests of accountability and transparency (are you still interested in these?). And see, you didn’t even have to pay me a toea for this.
Mr Kramer, surely you know that you cannot build your house on shaky foundations. So why are you trying to build your house on quicksand? For a person who many of us acknowledge as being very smart, that is downright foolish. Or do you think we cannot see that?
And Minister, I hope you are familiar with the provisions of the Cybercrime Code Act. You have just grabbed a tiger by the tail and you know what happens after that. As you quite rightly said, it is the clam before the storm and I hope you are well prepared for it. Anyone of a hundred senior police officers at PHQ can haul you into court on what you said so be prepared.
Have a top day Sir.