The Police Service Commission (PSC) has been served not to process the appointment of a new Commissioner of Police (ComPol), pending an Urgent Judicial Review (JR) filed before the court yesterday.
The JR was filed by lawyer Less John Napuati around 2pm on behalf of the Appellant — terminated Police Commissioner, Albert Nalpini.
In his statement to Acting Attorney General (AG) Kiel Loughman, Mr Napuati said his client’s JR will confirm a very strong apprehension of bias on the part of the PSC and advised him to inform his clients not to proceed with any process of appointing a new ComPol.
He said this is the same Commission which the court had failed their decision to re-advertise the ComPol position at one time when Mr Nalpini was already recommended for the post.
He said the same Commission made the recent decision to terminate his client.
Lawyer Napuati also mentioned there is a pending conspiracy case which will be forwarded to the prosecution soon for members of the current Commission and the Internal Affairs Minister, and they do not want another attempt of conspiracy by the authorities’ concern.
The JR is seeking court orders to quash the decision of the First Respondent (President) dated April 16, 2019 terminating Mr Nalpini.
It also seeks a declaration that the decision made on April 16, 2019 was made contrary to section 9A (2) and (3) of the Police Act [CAP 105], as well as a court order prohibiting the First Respondent and the Second Respondent (PSC) from appointing a new Commissioner until the final determination of the matter by the court.
In addition, the JR pursues a mandatory order requiring the First and Second Respondent to reinstate Mr Nalpini forthwith to carry out his duty as the Police Commissioner, as well as an order to declare the findings of the Professional Standard Unit date November 13, 2018 and investigation report on the Santo allegation null and void because it is allegedly contrary to section 60, 45B (1) and (2) of the Police Act.
Mr Napuati claimed that Mr Nalpini’s termination was unlawful and was made contrary to section 50 (3) and (4) of the Employment Act [CAP 160].
He said the Commission was biased in its decision as the Chairman of the PSC and the Chairlady of the Disciplinary Committee were both the complainant and investigators into the alleged disciplinary offences issue against his client.
He said they were all part of the investigation and the decision made on March 18, 2019 recommending the termination of Mr Nalpini from duty.
Mr Napuati disagreed with the findings of the Chairlady of the Disciplinary Committee as she was part of the committee that mandated the termination.
He alleged the decision of the Disciplinary Committee is biased in their conduct of proceedings which led to the decision made on March 18, 2019, in contrary to the Police Act.
Mr Napuati said there is likelihood of biasness in the conduct of the trial and the conduct of the committee leading to the conclusion reached, contrary to the Police Act.
He added the Respondents allegedly did not comply with the provisions of section 50 (4) subsection (3) of the Employment Act – which mandates someone to be heard before a disciplinary committee before his termination. Mr Nalpini was not given that opportunity.
A hearing date will be set shortly.