Solomon Is Police urge citizens to respect public inquiry process

RSIPF Commissioner Matthew Varley. Picture: RNZ

THE Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) has called on all people throughout the country to respect the public inquiry process into omissions and objections filed following the registration of voters as it launched a national operation to ensure the process was carried out safely and securely.

The public inquiries will be conducted at venues to be determined by the Solomon Islands Electoral Commission in the 50 National parliamentary constituencies from December 4–23, 2018.

“As the lead law enforcement agency for providing a safe and secure environment for a free and fair National General Election in Solomon Islands next year, the RSIPF is launching a national operation this week to ensure the public inquiry into omissions and objections to the registration of voters goes smoothly,” says RSIPF Commissioner Matthew Varley.

“This operation will involve police in all the provinces and Honiara City conducting high visibility operations and a presence at the selected venues where the public hearings will be conducted.

“Community policing officers in the provinces will also be conducting awareness meetings in communities during the public appeal period.

“A national Police Operations Command Centre will be established at the Rove Headquarters in Honiara to monitor and coordinate operations across the country. Specialised units from RSIPF Headquarters in Honiara will also be sent to assist in one or two provinces with reinforcements. In all provinces, Provincial Police Commanders will lead local operations while reporting through to the national Police Operations Centre.”

Commissioner Varley said the RSIPF was working together with the Solomon Islands Electoral Commission to ensure this public inquiry phase was carried out safely and that those who had filed their objections and omissions and those whose registration had been objected to would be given a fair hearing.

“Police will be present at many of the venues for the public hearings and will not tolerate any one who makes any attempt to disturb the process.

“We urge those who are involved in the process to respect whatever the decision of the inquiries will be. Police will take stern action against anyone who takes the law into their own hands.

“I appeal to chiefs, church and other community leaders to talk to members of your communities to spread messages of respect, tolerance and patience throughout this period.”

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