O’Neill defends his preparations for Bougainville referendum
Schram tells: ‘My wrongful dismissal & malicious prosecution’

Dr Schram is a great man, but he should respect our courts

A G SITORI * 

Schram-is-okay-Sevua-report-The-National
A 2013 report by the late Justice Sevua legitimated Dr Schram's doctoral credentials. Now attempts are being used to disprove this. Is Dr Schram needlessly defying the courts or are they being manipulated as a political plaything by his enemies? Who should really be on trial here & what are the implications for the rule of law in PNG?

PORT MORESBY - Dr Albert Schram, who had my support throughout his hardships, has now lost it if his intent in seeking a variation to his bail was to abscond and not return to Papua New Guinea to honour his commitment to the national court.

Whatever systems we have in place in PNG are our systems and we need people of great calibre like Dr Schram to accord our court system due respect, notwithstanding it being tinged in whatever shades of grey.

If Dr Schram does not return to PNG, as he has suggested, the esteemed doctor and his lawyer may have got the national court in bed with them to commit a felony.

It would be best for him to turn up in court and produce that authentic doctoral document.

Don’t force the court seek Interpol assistance to get him back to PNG. This time it may be jail and no bail variation application is going to help.

It is this same court he will need to appear before to lodge any damages claim against his accusers. The courts may not always readily avail themselves to his interests.

Dr Schram may also have his lawyer in trouble for pulling wool over the court’s eyes, when the real intent was to go wokabaut. It is possible the search clerk beside him in the PNG Attitude picture may soon not have a job.

On 12 June, the date Dr Schram is due back in PNG, the poor lawyer will attend court and explain to the judge why the doctor is not here and why he cannot produce a proper authenticated PhD accreditation.

This may also be a precedent for any other expatriate person seeking a variation to a court order; which may not be granted so readily if it is seen as a means to get them out of PNG legal jurisdiction.

All that is required is a genuine copy of the PhD certificate from the university in Italy signed by a public notary.

If the applications were made in court, this could easily have been arranged between police and Interpol in PNG and police and Interpol in Italy in compliance with the court’s order and directions.

* A G Sitori is the nom de plume of a senior judicial administrator in PNG

Comments

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William Dunlop

Michael - You're welcome. Thank you for enjoying my Irish satirical sense of humor.

Michael Dom

William Dunlop, I love this line "But now we in PNG are doing it our way the new Melanesian way, eating nails and shitting corkscrews."

I want to steal it from you.

Gabriel Ramoi

Chris Overland has correctly reflected on the rot in the administration of Justice in PNG.

An important aspect of cleaning up the rot is to have judges appointed through a open parliamentary screening process similar to the United States Senate inquiry.

Here a candidate for justice of the supreme court must face public scrutiny and importantly be able to provide leadership in dealing with officers of the court, who include police, if there is clear evidence in the abuse of court processes.

The case against Dr Schram should have been dismissed for abuse of process.

William Dunlop

These so called charges are downright vexatious and spiteful and would clearly be seen as such in a normal country enjoying the full force of the law.

It would have seen this basket case dismissed by the judge with the complainants being arrested and charged for malicious prosecution and perverting the course of justice.

But now we in PNG are doing it our way the new Melanesian way, eating nails and shitting corkscrews.

Chris Overland

I think that this article reflects pretty accurately the delusional state of those administering much of PNG's judicial system.

The author mistakes the abuse of the judicial process for the proper administration of justice.

Dr Schram has been subjected to a perverted process whereby the onus of proof has effectively been reversed, leaving him forced to prove his innocence.

It is always open to a judge to dismiss an action because he or she forms the view that the claims made have no merit or are merely vexatious.

Given reports of the judge's scathing comments about the plaintiff's inability to offer any evidence to support their claims this option was certainly available, yet it has not been pursued.

References to getting Interpol to drag Dr Schram back to PNG to face its version of justice border on the bizarre.

Just what does the author think Interpol exists to do? Further the ambitions of cynical, process abusing shysters such as those pursuing Dr Schram?

The ugly truth is that this entire fiasco has been a monstrous abuse of process that has, in practice, denied Dr Schram both due process and natural justice.

As has repeatedly been pointed out, it would have been very, very easy for any competent authority to confirm the validity or otherwise of Dr Schram's qualifications, yet this was never done.

The take home message from this case is that PNG's judicial system can be easily abused by those determined to do so.

It is another example of the maladministration, incompetence and corruption that is a rampaging cancer within virtually all PNG's important institutions.

No academic administrator ought to now be in any doubt that any attempt to impose necessary reforms upon the management and direction of PNG's institutions of higher learning will be resisted by those who feel it is against their interests, including by using spurious charges to harass and intimidate.

This case will do enormous damage to PNG's interests in both the short and long term.

Quite how it can hope to attract the services of top class academics in the future is beyond my comprehension.

Lindsay F Bond

Questions remain as to what investigative prelude was begun and achieved by police (and other authorised officers) in establishing verification of matters presented in Court.

If it can be shown that removal and withholding of the Schram passport lacked due process, question is as to what extent of malpractice or insufficiency occurred, such that the PNG government is brought to bring corrective measures and actions among its appointees.

Robin Lillicrapp

As rational as it may seem to explain these facets of jurisprudence in a manner befitting the gravity of legal circumstance, there is little if any reference to that which even Blind Freddy would appreciate forms the matters of injustice afforded Dr Schram over past months and years.

Gabriel Ramoi

By the way, have formal charges been brought against the former Vice Chancellor and former council members for official corruption as recommended by the Sevua inquiry?
__________

It seems not, Gabriel - KJ

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