By Vasinatta Yama – EMTV NEWS, Port Moresby
Two high-prominent lawyers, Sam Bonner and Tiffany Twivey, will face the Lawyers Statutory Committee over disciplinary actions.
In a three-man bench ruling this morning, the Supreme Court refused Twivey and Bonner’s applications to review the decision of Judge Nicholas Kirriwom, sitting as a single Judge of the Supreme Court, when he issued that order.
Judge Derek Hartshorn accepted the application, however, was overruled by Judge Collin Makail and Judge Don Sawong.
Justice Kirriwom, when sitting as a single judge of the Supreme Court in 2015 heard an application filed by the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary (RPNGC), who is also the fourth respondent in this matter, for an interim injunction to restrain Jema Lawyers from representing National Fraud and Anti-Corruption Director, Matthew Damaru, and Timothy Gitua, his deputy.
In his ruling he observed that Twivey and Bonner could be guilty of perverting the course of justice.
They filed an application in the District Court setting aside the warrant of arrest of Treasury Secretary, Dairi Vele, without notifying Detective Chief Inspector, Timothy Gitua, who was the complainant in the proceeding at the Committal Court.
Gitua was replaced with RPNGC as the new informant or complainant.
Justice Kirriwom referred them to the Lawyers Statutory Committee, finding their actions to be unethical, unprofessional and possibly perverting the course of justice.
Meanwhile, the lawyers filed this application to the three-man Supreme Court bench, arguing that they were denied natural justice and procedural fairness, because they were not given any opportunity to be heard.
However, today Justice Sawong, who ruled in Justice Hartshorn and Justice Makail’s absences, said the court refused the application, finding it misconceived.
The appellant, James Marape, second respondent Ano Pala, fourth respondent, RPNGC, and the fifth respondent, the State, will pay Damaru and Gitua costs incurred.