BRYAN KRAMER MP
MADANG - Yesterday afternoon at 6pm I was at Biliau village on Manam Island when I noticed my phone registered five missed calls from of police commissioner Gary Baki.
I was on the Island to carry out an assessment of the extent of damage and plight of the Manam people following a massive volcanic eruption on Saturday morning but I was also aware that Bailiau was the same village where journalists were attacked on Sunday.
I was in the middle of speaking to villagers when commissioner Baki called. I also received a text message from him.
The message read - "Mr Kramer, it’s the police commissioner, can you answer your phone."
I replied ‘sorry I'm on Manam Island in a meeting with the villagers, will call you back in 30 min’.
Baki replied - "You better".
At this point it became clear Baki was calling me in relation to my recent article about filing a complaint and proceedings against him over his decision to close the file against prime minister Peter O'Neill relating to the Paraka scandal.
So I responded - "With due respect I plan to return your call, I don't see any reason why I wouldn't, or would have to if I choose not to."
At exactly 6:37pm I returned Baki's call. What followed was a heated conversation that lasted four minutes and 54 seconds.
The commissioner started the conversation with - "Who do you think you are?” and , while many other things were said, the more notable statements by the commissioner included the following:
“You are nobody....“
“You are not even a lawyer....”
“You are mix race bastard....”
“Nau tasol papa karim you bilong bol bilong em…."
“I am coming to parliament to face you….”
“You hurry up and file the court case against me and make sure you personally come to my office and serve it on me….”
“You filed a case against electoral commissioner and I will make sure you bring the evidence to my office….”
My response was – “It appears the good commissioner is confused between the powers he has over the force versus that over any other citizen let alone a member of parliament.”
If he is taking issue with the fact I'm mix race, last time I checked so is the prime minister Peter O'Neill, who appointed him, deputy prime minister Charles Abel, Member for Lae Open John Rosso, Member for Ijiviatri Richard Masere, Member for Bogia Robert Naguri, Member for Huon Gulf Ross Semor, Member for Kavieng Open, Member for Namatanai Open, Oro Governor Gary Juffa, East Sepik Governor Allan Bird
Add to that his own assistant commissioner David Manning and several thousand Papua New Guineans around the country and abroad.
I would be lying if I said I was shocked by Baki's outburst, he does have a reputation for losing his cool.
On the issue of my complaint against the electoral commissioner, it is interesting he has taken a direct interest in it but I wasn't aware it was criminal investigation procedure for the commissioner to summon witnesses to testify to the evidence. Last time I checked that jurisdiction belonged to the courts.
Mr Baki needs to come to terms with the fact that his threats or intimidation are of little concern to me. What I am concerned about is high-level corruption that is the cause behind why the majority of Papua New Guineans live in poverty.
The only means to stopping me will be a bullet to my head and nothing less. While some may say that can be arranged, what they need to understand is that it’s exactly what I'm banking on as the shortest pathway to unite a country and bring down those behind PNG's corrupt system of government.
Some free advice to the commissioner. Perhaps next time put in some thought before calling a member of parliament who has a reputation for being prolific on social media and followed by 100,000 people.
In anticipation that Mr Baki may claim I'm lying and threaten to have me arrested or take the matter to court, he needs to remember I was in the company of an entire village when he called so I don't expect to have a problem calling witnesses, and he can add to that the records on my phone.