Sunday, May 28, 2023
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Serious offenders are always handcuffed: Tikoduadua

Minister for Home Affairs Pio Tikoduadua says male suspects under arrest for serious offences shall always be handcuffed when under escort.

Clarifying this in a media conference today, Tikoduadua said this was also applicable to former Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

He said Sayed-Khaiyum was transferred in handcuffs from the CID headquarters to Totogo Police Station for his own safety and because of his medical condition.

Tikoduadua said under the Fiji Police Force Standing Orders, under the section that deals with ‘Custody, Treatment and Administration of prisoners’, Section 46, highlights that “Male prisoners under arrest for serious offences shall always be handcuffed when under escort.”

Tikoduadua said that Police officers obviously interpreted that a charge of Abuse of Office is a serious office.

“Sayed-Khaiyum spent the night at the Totogo Police Station’s Common Holding Area.”

“Let me clarify that the treatment of accused persons by the police is governed by legal frameworks such as the Constitution, the Criminal Procedures Act 2009 and the Fiji Police Force Standing Orders. These frameworks define the procedures that must be followed by the police when dealing with individuals who are accused of crimes.”

Tikoduadua highlighted that the Police Standing Orders are vague and does not define what a serious crimes and treatment of those we refer to as ‘high interest’ persons.

He said these are in the hands of the police to interpret subjectively – “As a military person, I know the detrimental affect vague orders have on decision-making – especially in constantly changing environments and his Ministry is already in the process of reviewing and changing the laws and the Standing Orders under which the police operates.

“We want to update them so that they reflect the Government’s vision of creating a more professional and compassionate Police Force.”

Ilaitia Ravuwai
Ilaitia Ravuwai
Journalist |


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