Northern Territory Police Commissioner Jamie Chalker will not return to work today as his legal battle with the Government to keep his job continues.
It’s now 18 days since Sky News Australia first revealed the Government had lost confidence in Mr Chalker and asked him to resign.
The Police Commissioner has since launched legal action to prevent his dismissal.
Police had previously said Mr Chalker was on “planned leave” and was due to return to work on April 19.
But that leave has been extended and he has not returned to work.
Michael Murphy remains the acting commissioner.
In a statement, Chief Minister Natasha Fyles said:
“As I have previously said, we have been in negotiations with Mr Chalker.
“This week a matter was commenced in the Supreme Court. I am aware of reports discussing that matter, but will not provide comments as the matter is currently before the court.
“We continue to negotiate with Mr Chalker, and at this time he remains on leave.
“As a government, we are focussed on Territorians. Deputy Commissioner Murphy continues to act during this time.”
The ABC has reported that during a court hearing on Monday, Mr Chalker’s counsel, Arthur Moses SC, said Ms Fyles had sent Mr Chalker a letter late last month that included four allegations, including one that Mr Chalker had asked the Australian Defence Force to go into Alice Springs.
“We know that (allegation) was false … there’s an assertion … they might have meant to refer to the Australian Federal Police,” Mr Moses was reported as saying.
There have been repeated calls for the Australian Federal Police to assist NT Police dealing with serious crime issues in Alice Springs and other parts of the Northern Territory.
They were first made by Alice Springs Mayor Matt Paterson in January. Last week Opposition Leader Peter Dutton repeated those calls while in Alice Springs.
But the NT Government has repeatedly rejected the suggestion.
Police Minister Kate Worden last week said the AFP were not required in the NT, as she accused Mr Dutton of a “dog act” for raising the issue of Indigenous child sex abuse during his visit to Central Australia.