Friday, 15 June 2007 8:56 AM

Investigations Underway for Alleged Bribery

The Prime Minister has stated in a recent press conference that he has been assured by the Police Commissioner Jahir Khan that they will look into the bribery scandal.

Sogavare also stated that he is baffled by the Opposition's explanation of the alleged bribery. "Since when did the Opposition office become an institution that lends money," said Sogavare. "I want to know the source of that money and know why backbenchers were required to sign resignation letters before receiving the money."

The Prime Minister also said that he is aware that at least SBD$500-thousand dollars was involved in this scheme supposedly engineered by the Opposition to weaken his government. He said some of his ministers and backbenchers have admitted being offered money, and some have actually signed documents. The Prime Minister said he has confident that his ministers and backbenchers did not lie to him.

Opposition leader Fred Fono stated earlier that the money was given to the Minister as assistance to his son who is pursuing an education in New Zealand. Fono denies that it was a bribe stating that he has copies of the letter by the minister allegedly requesting assistance. Fono also welcomes the planned police investigation into the bribery scandal.

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