The Ombudsman Commission today referred Hon. Thomas Keriri, MHR, Member for Rau Constituency, Central Bougainville, Bougainville House of Representatives to the Public Prosecutor for alleged misconduct in office.
The Ombudsman Commission conducted an investigation and has granted Mr Keriri a right to be heard which he failed to respond to, and having deliberated on the matter has determined that there is a prima facie case that Mr Keriri has been guilty of misconduct in office.
As required by Section 20(2) of the Organic Law on the Duties and Responsibilities of Leadership, the Commission has notified Mr Keriri of its intention to refer the matter to Public Prosecutor.
After being satisfied, for the purposes of Section 29(1) of the Constitution and Sections 17(d), 20(4) and 27(1) of the Organic Law on the Duties and Responsibilities of Leadership that there is a prima facie case that the Mr Thomas Keriri, MHR, Member for Rau Constituency, Bougainville House of Representatives, has been guilty of misconduct in office, the Commission decided to refer the Member to the Public Prosecutor for his independent deliberations under Section 177(1) (b) of the Constitution.
The referral is in the hands of the Public Prosecutor who has the discretion to bring or decline to bring proceedings under the Leadership Code for alleged misconduct in office in accordance with Section 177(1) (b) of the Constitution.