Before heading to court, Goroka-based Public Prosecutor Jasmine Omena makes a point of catching up with lawyers in the Public Solicitor’s Office to discuss the cases due to come up.
“Before we go to court we iron out any issues that need addressing, and we prepare ourselves to go to court,” Omena says.
As a result, less court time is wasted on unnecessary disputes and misunderstandings and cases can be dealt with in a more timely and efficient manner.
Omena says this new way of doing things came after she attended a Trial Advocacy Workshop supported by the PNG-Australia Partnership in Port Moresby.
The workshop was organised by the Office of the Public Prosecutor and attended by 70 lawyers and prosecutors. It was aimed at improving communication and consultation between public prosecutors, police prosecutors and defence lawyers and also strengthening their ability to advocate confidently on increasingly complex and demanding court cases.
Public Solicitor’s Office Legal Officer, Sharon Pitep, is looking forward to seeing improvements in communication with prosecutors.
“It is very important to build up good working relationships with the public prosecutors and police prosecutors because, at the end of the day, we are all working to see to it that justice is served,” Pitep says.
Alotau based Senior Constable Joseph Ambere, a police prosecutor for the past 10 years, says the insights he gained in conducting examinations and cross-examinations of witnesses, preparing and presenting evidence and developing indictments would be very useful in his day-to-day work.
Feature Pic: Senior Constable Joseph Ambere, Police Prosecutor, Alotau / Jasmine Omena, Legal Officer, Office of the Public Prosecutor, Goroka / Sharon Pitep, Legal Officer (Crimes), Public Solicitor’s Office, Port Moresby