BY ALEX DADAMU
ATTORNEY General John Muria Junior has reiterated that orders which exist in the last State of Emergency which restricts movement or crossing to the either side of the border is still in force and the maximum fine is 1 million dollars fine.
The Attorney’s General’s (AG) statement comes as neighbouring Papua New Guinea has seen an upsurge of positive COVID-19 case passed the 200 mark – with the latest being recorded in Bougainville which is at the doorstep of the country.
AG Muria reiterated that Police officers and other officers from frontline agencies are authorised officers under the existing regulations which means they have certain powers to give directives whenever they deemed fit to protect the country and its citizens from COVID-19.
“Anyone found breaching any directives given by RSIPF officers or any officers of any frontline agencies can be fined $10,000 or imprisoned for 5 (five) years or both.
“And in the instance that the directive given by the authorised officers has been breached along with the border restriction regulation prohibiting crossing the border, in this instance, a $10,000 fine will be added on top of the 1 million dollars fine,” the Attorney General warned.
Attorney General Muria Junior in the meantime said police or authorised officers have the power to immediately seize any boat or ship that breaches border restriction and regulations.
Meanwhile, according to Police Commissioner Mostyn Mangau, RSIPF has deployed a team to the border on Sunday 9th of August 2020 to step-up border security.
“RSIPF officers on the ground are being dispatch to every villages to make awareness to villagers on the risks at hand – telling each and every villagers to work closely with the police to keep the nation safe,” Police Commissioner Mostyn Mangau said.