A government official in Solomon Islands says a local police officer may be appointed as a caretaker police commissioner until a permanent replacement is found for outgoing commissioner Peter Marshall.

The Permanent Secretary of Police Henry Pika says Mr. Marshall's contract expires in February, but he may leave before that to prepare for his new position as New Zealand police commissioner.

Mr. Pika says the Police Minister will soon be making a submission on a replacement to the cabinet, which will make the final decision on the matter.

He says a local police officer may be appointed in a caretaker capacity.
But he will not comment on whether the permanent replacement should be a local officer or brought in from abroad.

The deputy police commissioner Edmond Sikua has told Solomon Islands media it is time to have a local commissioner as local officers have the capability and expertise to do the job with the assistance of RAMSI.