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Meet the new C.O.P

Top Australian federal police (AFP) cop is our new Commissioner of Police


New RSIPF Police Commissioner, Matthew Varley

A top-notch Australian Federal Police [AFP] Officer with top credentials in criminal investigations and law enforcement is expected to be Solomon Islands’ next Police Commissioner.

According to a senior Government Minister, Matthew Varley is already in the country, ready to take up his appointment.

He attended last week’s official opening of the Central Police Station’s new Fire Station.

Until his appointment, Mr Varley was the AFP’s Assistant Commissioner and National Manager Workforce & Development, based in Canberra.

He takes over from Frank Prendergast, whose term has or is about to expire.

Sources said a handover ceremony is planned for next Wednesday January 25, in Honiara.

Mr Varley is said to be the first AFP Officer at Assistant Commissioner level to be assigned the role of the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) Police Commissioner.

His appointment reflects the importance Australia attaches to security and overall policing role in Solomon Islands.

It is not clear whether the job was advertised or he was merely hand-picked for the nation’s top policing job.

As a result, many in government approached by this newspaper were not prepared to discuss it, saying only that details of the appointment would be announced during the takeover/handover ceremony in midweek.

Mr Varley has an impressive record with the Australian Federal Police (AFP) which he joined more than a decade ago.

He has since breezed through the rank and file of the organisation, working in Sydney, New South Wales as well as AFP’s Liaison Officer based in Singapore and responsible for Brunei and East Timor.

According to his profile, Mr Varley’s top skills include, Law Enforcement, Government, Policy, Emergency Management, Criminal Investigations, Criminal Justice and public policy.

He studied at the University of Adelaide between 2014 and 2017 where he received a Master of Business Administration (MBA), Business.

In 2008, he received a Diploma at the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

 In 2006, Mr Varley graduated from the Emergency Management Australia with a Certificate in Emergency Management, Crisis/Emergency/Disaster Management

 He also has a Certificate in Applied Management from the Australian Institute of Police Management

In 2004, Mr Varley attended Charles Sturt University where he graduated with a Bachelor of Policing (Investigations) with Distinction, Law Enforcement Investigation and Interviewing.