—-Accuse leaders of avoiding dialogue in stand-off with Police
WANTED Malaita man, Knoxly Atu is prepared to face the law, accusing political leaders of not providing dialogue to end the stand-off between his community and the Police over the past months.
Mr Atu, was the leader of the Malaita for Democracy (M4D) movement and was wanted by authorities following allegations his group helped organized the deadly November 2021 riots in Honiara.
Speaking to Island Sun yesterday, Mr Atu said he was involved in some activities which are not right, but those activities are not from his own making.
He said as Chairman of the Mala-MOI Council of Chiefs, he had expected leaders, whether custom, church or political to come and help iron out issues that he was involved in.
“The alleged issues against me are not from my own thinking and planning, its political, and over the past six months my community bore the brunt of our law enforcement agency.
“There was never any intention by leaders to organize dialogue, thereby as a leader, I decided it is best I face the law to answer for the allegations against me.
Mr Atu decided to hand himself to the Honiara based Police operations team and not from the PPC of Honiara Police or Auki station as has been reported in the media.
“My decision was made under my own accord and through the trust I have for a senior Officer within Police operations for me to come and face all the charges laid before me.
“I’m a leader and I have to come and answer for my actions and to help my community live a peaceful life,” he added.
Atu said he is saddened that after the Riots, political leaders have defended themselves against wrong doing and allow their followers to suffer.
“If they have offered for us to have dialogue, then we would be able to sort these issues, however, the issue has dragged on.
“My community was targeted and we lived in fear for the past six months.
He said the issues he fought for were not personal issues, they are issues that affect the nation and our leaders are aware off.
“But when things come to worst, people became silent. We thought our leaders would step in and conduct dialogue, instead my community was targeted.
He appealed to his followers to respect the law and allow him as a leader to face whatever comes.
“Leaders who helped initiate these issues are in denial, so I must come out and assist law enforcement to sort out the issues,” Mr Atu added.
Mr Atu was transported to Honiara last week by a speed boat after explaining to his community about his reasons to assist law enforcement clear his name.