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April 18, 2021
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Leave for Judicial Review on Appointment of David Manning Granted

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Terminated Assistant Police Commissioner for Human Resource, Sylvester Kalaut, and Public Service Commission’s second preference for the position of the Police Commissioner, Fred Yakasa were successful with their application for Leave seeking a Judicial Review on David Manning’s appointment.

The Leave granted by Justice David Cannings means the two plaintiffs, Kalaut and Yakasa will challenge the process involved in the appointment of David Manning as Commission of Police in December 2019.

This will be the first time the appointment of a police commissioner will be challenged in court.

When making a Leave Application before the National Court, the plaintiff must prove to the courts that the matter is an arguable case, and the plaintiff has sufficient interests in the matter.

Thus David Dataona, the lawyer representing Kalaut and Yakasa submitted in court that both plaintiffs were shortlisted out of the 18 applicants who applied for the position of the police commissioner and both had a genuine interest in the case.

The application was filed on grounds that the process involved in the appointment of David Manning was biased and did not follow the proper process.

Dataona told the courts, one of the requirements for the COP’s position was for the applicants to have a tertiary qualification, a criterion that Manning did meet.

However, Manning’s lawyer objected to the submission saying correct processes were followed and the second plaintiff should only provide supporting statements to Kalaut and not be a party to this case.

In granting a Leave for the Judicial Review, Justice Cannings ordered that all Notice of Motions and supporting affidavit be filed to all respondents by the 21st of May.

Justice Canning granted the Leave application stating that the Public Service Commission were public authorities and were subjected to review.

This will be the first time the appointment of a police commissioner will be challenged in court and the matter returns to court on May 28th.

By Theckla Gunga, EMTV News, Port Moresby.

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