Criminal Justice Experts Condemn Appointment of Haumaha
PRESS RELEASE: People Against Prisons Aotearoa
People Against Prisons Aotearoa (PAPA) shares victims advocate Louise Nicholas’ concerns about the appointment of Wally Haumaha as Deputy Police Commissioner.
“Haumaha spent years insisting that Nicholas, a victim of gang rape by police officers, was lying,” says PAPA spokeswoman Emilie Rakete. “He defended his friends Rickards, Shipton, and Schollum, while disregarding any responsibility to protect victims of sexual violence. He clearly cannot be trusted to hold police officers to account.”
“The appointment of Haumaha flies in the face of the New Zealand Police’s claims that it is committed to cultural change,” says Rākete. “Haumaha has been Deputy Chief Executive Māori to the New Zealand Police for years. In that period, rates of police violence against Māori have actually increased.”
“Haumaha has failed miserably in his responsibilities to end sexual and racist violence by police officers. He would only continue to do so in this new position.”
“This appointment is a boys’ club reward for Haumaha and must be rescinded. It is unthinkable that a man who attacks victims of sexual violence by police officers is now responsible for reforming the Police,” says Rākete.
“This appointment demonstrates how superficial the Police’s commitment to change really is. Despite years of effort to reform the institution, this is the best it is capable of. The New Zealand Police has proven itself a rotten institution that must be rebuilt from the ground up.”