On Manus Island, there are ominous signs that Transfield and the Immigration Department are actively preparing to re-introduce local PNG staff into the detention centre.
On Monday 14 July, after a routine discussion between asylum seekers’ representatives in Mike Compound and Transfield over access to phones and the use of the internet, the two representatives were taken out of the compound by Wilson Security guards.
Other asylum seekers were told, “They aren’t coming back.” They have not been seen since. Both are eye-witnesses to 17 February attack and to the murder of Reza Berati. There are serious concerns that PNG police involved in the February attack will have access to them; putting their lives in danger.
No local staff have worked inside the detention centre since Reza’s killing.