|Subject: Re: One confirmed death in Enga polls
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Date Posted: Sat, Jul 07 2007, 04:57:39pm
In reply to:
's message, "One confirmed death in Enga polls" on Sat, Jul 07 2007, 12:47:34am
Ex-MP's son killed in PNG poll violence
7th July 2007, 13:17 WST
A policeman is in custody after allegedly shooting dead the son of a former MP during an election-related clash in Papua New Guinea's Highlands.
Police have also seized high-powered firearms and detained 18 men for firearms offences as polling continues across the region.
But police said polling in the country of just over six million people had been largely peaceful compared to the violence-wracked 2002 election.
Police spokesman David Terry said a police officer had been suspended and was in custody while police investigated the shooting death of a man in his early 20s at Kandep in Enga Province on Wednesday.
The man was the son of a former MP from the district, he said.
Kandep is in the electorate of Deputy Prime Minister Don Polye who was allegedly shot at with a pistol by rival candidate Peter Mision at a rally in the town on June 9.
Mision was charged following the incident and released on bail.
Around 2,000 extra police, soldiers and prison officers have been deployed to the Highlands to provide security during the elections.
Police want to prevent a repeat of the widespread violence and vote rigging that marred the 2002 poll.
An estimated 100 people were killed in election-related violence that year.
Deputy Police Commissioner Geoffrey Vaki said security forces had maintained road blocks and patrolled in force to catch or deter opportunists and criminal elements who might disrupt the poll.
"Credit should go to the security forces who are working hard to ensure the people of this country go to the polls in a free and fair environment," he said.
Terry said police seized two high-powered firearms, an M-16 and an SLR, and arrested 15 young men following a car chase near Keltiga, the home village of Western Highlands Governor Paias Wingti.
Another two men were arrested in Mt Hagen after a sniper's rifle was found in their vehicle following a chase by soldiers and police, he said.
A Magnum pistol and a homemade pistol were also seized in the province and one man arrested for possession of an illegal firearm.
"The gun seizures and arrests showed the effectiveness of the security operation," Terry said.
Police have responded to several incidents of hijackings or attempted hijackings of ballot boxes since the 11-day polling period began on June 30.
In Enga on Tuesday, police chased Wapanamenda MP Miki Kaeok by helicopter and questioned him after he and his supporters allegedly tried to take ballot boxes from a treasury building.
At Kundiawa in Chimbu Province, police seized a semi-automatic weapon and ammunition from the house of former Agriculture Minister Mathew Siune who could face charges, police said.
Polling in PNG continues until Tuesday.
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