KNOXLEY ATU – founder and principal security advisor to Malaita Premier Daniel Suidani – has surrendered to authorities, Honiara police confirmed yesterday.
Atu was brought to Honiara on a 60hp outboard motor, possibly from Auki on Thursday. A police launch met Mr. Atu’s party halfway between Honiara and Auki, police said.
“Atu’s surrender is a private arrangement,” police said.
Police expect to interview him over the next few days to establish a number of serious allegations against him, including the setting up of roadblocks near Bethel village in East Fataleka where Mr. Atu lives.
His alleged involvement in the violence against Opposition Members of the Malaita Provincial Assembly last year is also expected to come under the scrutiny of police investigators.
An Opposition MPAs were subsequently forced to withdraw a vote of no confidence against Premier Suidani outside the Chamber of the Malaita Provincial Assembly in Honiara.
Atu’s surrender could indicate the crumbling of the anti-national government stance headed by Premier Suidani himself and his political advisor, Celsus Talifilu.
Honiara police confirmed yesterday Atu is in police custody but added no charges have been laid.
“Obviously, there will be charges but that would happen after police interviews to establish facts,” police said.
By Alfred Sasako