High Court judge Stephen Pallaras has criticised the regular and frequent absence of the country’s Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) on sporting tours overseas, saying it has impacted negatively on the justice system.
Judge Pallaras says Solomon Islands needs and deserves to have a full time Director of Public Prosecutions in order to have an effective criminal justice system.
Pallaras says Director Ronald Talasasa’s constant absences to go on sporting tours or conferences, is both disruptive to the whole community and ruins attempts to expedite criminal trials.
He says cases are constantly disrupted mid-way through to accommodate Mr Talasasa’s travelling diary which keeps everyone else waiting until his return to the country.
“Not only are cases interrupted mid-way through to accommodate his travelling diary which by the way keeps everyone else waiting, including the accused who have interests. Obviously, the victims will have to wait, the witnesses will have to wait, the lawyers will have to wait, the judges will sit there and do nothing but everyone else in the legal system whose cases are waiting for this case to finish having to wait. Why? Because the Director is not here. What is worse is that no prosecutorial decisions of any consequence can be made in his absence.”