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By Sheila Lasibori

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, Sept. 14) – Former politician James Yali has again slipped out of jail under the guise of being sick, and was seen conducting what appeared to be a political gathering with his supporters in the precincts of a clinic in Madang.

The convicted rapist was somehow let out of the Beon jail on Wednesday and had a two-hour meeting with his associates within the premises of a clinic, angering both staff and management there.

Correctional Services Commissioner Richard Sikani was angered by this and has threatened to sack officers responsible for letting Yali out.

He has also ordered an examination of a medical report which some claim will show that Yali is not paralysed on one side of his body, as he had claimed when he was released to nominate for the 2007 general election.

Head of the clinic Dr John Mackerell, angered by the group’s meeting at the premises for the second time this year, said he had no knowledge of the gathering and had spoken with Madang police to charge the group for trespassing.

"He did not have an appointment with me and met with his friends in the backyard," Dr Mackerell said, adding the group met while he was out on lunch break. Upon his return, the group sighted him and left the premises.

The meeting was from 12.15pm to 2.20pm, and staff at the clinic said no CS officer was at the site during the meeting.

They said after the meeting, two officers picked Yali up in a CS vehicle.

Provincial police commander Chief Insp Anthony Wagambie (Junior) said Dr Mackerell had spoken with him regarding the matter, but was yet to make a formal complaint for police to act.

Mr Sikani, who leant of Yali’s two-hour release from Beon through a fax from Dr Mackerell, expressed frustration that his officers at Beon did not take heed of his previous orders regarding detainee Yali.

"My instruction to officers in Madang is if he is sick notify his doctor in Madang for the doctor to go to Beon jail to see him. He (Yali) must not be taken out of Beon," Mr Sikani said.

He said he had instructed the Northern region commander to put together a team from Port Moresby to travel to Madang to investigate how Yali was let out of Beon.

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