Probe on PNG election officials

Papua New Guinea Police are investigating the conduct of some election managers and returning officers for election-related offences during the 2022 PNG General Election, says Director of Crimes Joel Simatab.

Simatab said four returning officers had already been arrested, charged and detained.

“It is because of their conduct that we now have so many election-related investigations going on,” he said.

“We also received reports that some of the election-related violence were related to the conduct of election managers and returning officers.

“We must respect the (election) process, protect the process and ensure that this does not happen again.

“That’s why we will investigate the conduct of election managers and returning officers.”

PNG Police are already investigating election-related violence in Southern Highlands, Enga, Jiwaka and Chimbu.

A team from the Crimes Unit at the Port Moresby police headquarters is assisting local investigators in the four provinces.

“In Southern Highlands, we are investigating the burning of ballot boxes at the Mendi police stations, the burning of buildings and the murder in Mendi,” he said.

“In Enga, we will be looking into the burning of properties that include churches and schools and the murders.

“We have men in Jiwaka investigating the alleged killings (of locals) by policemen during the elections. “In Chimbu, we will be looking into the fighting and burning of properties,” he said.