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PNG Ombudsman wounded in attempted ‘hit’

Head Nine MSN reports this morning that PNG’s anti-corruption boss was shot and seriously wounded in an assassination attempt outside his Port Moresby home on Friday night.

PNG's Chief Ombudsman Chronox Manek was left for dead after gunmen fired through the windscreen of his Nissan Patrol, but is in hospital in a stable condition.

Mr Manek said shots were fired at his right chest at point-blank range. A bullet went through his shoulder.

After shooting several times, the gunmen got back in their car and sped off, "thinking I was dead," said Mr Manek, adding it was a "miracle" that he had cheated death.

He tried to follow his attackers but, dizzy from loss of blood, drove to nearby Paradise Hospital.

"Police are determined to get to the bottom of this," said Police Commissioner Gari Baki.

PNG's Prime Minister Michael Somare, Treasurer Patrick Pruaitch and a host of other government figures are currently under investigation by the Ombudsman Commission.

Mr Manek is from the Boana area of the Morobe Province. He was formerly the Public Prosecutor and Public Solicitor. He holds a Bachelors of Law from UPNG and a Masters in Law from Melbourne University.


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I find it quite odd to believe Chronox Manex's accounts. Being pursued or suspecting something, I'd think that, instinctively you'd change course, head to a hotel or somewhere safer. Maybe alert people at home or if there's any security at home, tell them to stay alert and ensure that there's nothing suspecting is seen around the house and come home. Late night staff party is no excuse for a personal security lapse.

Although, I wouldn't want to be seen to be belittling this, it appears more like a personal grudge or family related matter than anything else. Pardon my somewhat insensitivity but, I always like to look at common sense and prevailing circumstances first before piecing things together...I guess, I should be blamed for my lateral thinking and suspended judgement.

What were some of the latest threats that he and he his department received? Are those pointers shared with the Police team doing the investigations? Can the public know at this stage or are they not ready for public dissemination?

Is he suspecting anybody and/or group in particular? What are his personal gut feelings?

The OC has been quite inactive and not so aggressive in pursuing some major issues this year.They've been pretty much de-gassed.

How come, all of a sudden, someone wanted to take his life when the court systems have effectively shut down for the Christmas breaks? They should be open later in Feb 2010.

Let's have some honest discussion. Blind condemnation doesn't help. The office of the OC should and must never be used to cover any private matters of concern.

PNG is a closely connected/knit society, and something someone is planning or must have overhead somewhere makes its way into the grave vine and doesn't always remains a secret anymore.

Reginald Renagi

Thank God, the Chief Ombudsman, Chronox Manek was not seriously wounded or killed by unknown gunmen last Friday night. I pray that he makes a speedy recovery and that this serious incident does not deter him and his staff from pursuing several high profile cases the Ombudsman Commission is presently investigating.

I also hope that the Police Commissioner, Gary Baki makes this a priority investigation to get leads and start making some quick arrests to see who the would-be killers are linked with. One would not be wrong here to assume that the unknown gunmen are on the payroll of some crime syndicate or linked to some people higher up in the government.

It is most obvious that the attempt on the Chief Ombudsman's life was possibly a contract job. This will not stop there as we will see more of these kinds of criminal activities in future. The government must start getting serious about addressing crime in a more effective way from here on. After this incident, the police must start providing close protection security for Mr. Manek and other senior public office holders occupying sensitive posts.

Yehiura Hriehwazi

This is terribly shocking! The gunmen are undoubtedly link to people who do not want any further investigations into alleged misconduct in office.
I hope and pray that the law enforcement agenices in PNG (police) will investigate the case throughly and apprehend the attackers. They will then spill the names of people who hired them to kill Mr Mr Manek. Thank God that he is still alive and will return to his work with more vigor and unwavering dedication.

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