Pacific Anti-Corruption Updates (1 February 2019): Micronesia, PNG, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Samoa

Asia Pacific: Little to no progress on anti-corruption.  At the top of this year’s Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI), New Zealand scores 87 out of 100, making it the leading country fighting corruption in the region and second across the globe. New Zealand is followed closely by Singapore and Australia, with scores of 85 and 77 respectively.

https://www.transparency.org/news/feature/asia_pacific_makes_little_to_no_progress_on_anti_corruption

 

FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA:

FSM government 'disturbed' by bribery allegations.  The Federated States of Micronesia government says it's disturbed by allegations that officials were bribed by a Hawaiian businessman.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/381203/fsm-government-disturbed-by-bribery-allegations

 

PAPUA NEW GUINEA:

PNG Highly Corrupt: Report. A new report by the global watchdog Transparency International has again classified Papua New Guinea as one of the most highly corrupt countries in the world.

https://postcourier.com.pg/png-highly-corrupt-report/

One third of PNG electricity being stolen.  Papua New Guinea's power utility says more than 30 percent of electricity produced in Port Moresby is being stolen through illegal connections.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/381363/one-third-of-png-electricity-being-stolen

PNG Govt 'cooking the books' – economist. An economist says the Papua New Guinea government is deliberately using fake figures to paint a picture of a more rosy economy.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/381344/png-govt-cooking-the-books-economist

PNG court revokes Schram arrest warrant. A Papua New Guinea court has revoked the arrest warrant for the former University of Technology vice-chancellor Albert Schram.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/381270/png-court-revokes-schram-arrest-warrant

PNG govt promises to account for APEC inventory. Papua New Guinea's government says it will ensure that assets used for hosting APEC last year are accounted for.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/381114/png-govt-promises-to-account-for-apec-inventory

Former PNG Defence Force officer charged with fraud. A former officer of the Papua New Guinea Defence Force has been charged with fraud.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/381113/former-png-defence-force-officer-charged-with-fraud

Madang governor denies bribing election officers.  The governor of Papua New Guinea's Madang province Peter Yama denies he bribed electoral officials.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/380942/madang-governor-denies-bribing-election-officers

PNG attorney-general warns about interference. Papua New Guinea's attorney-general has stressed the importance of public office-holders working within their mandated authority.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/380934/png-attorney-general-warns-about-interference

 

FIJI:

Public Office Holders’ Families ‘Also Under Scrutiny’.  Spouses, de facto partners and children of persons holding public office must sacrifice certain liberties to ensure transparency is fully assured, says Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption senior lawyer Rashmi Aslam.

https://fijisun.com.fj/2019/01/29/public-office-holders-families-also-under-scrutiny/

Alleged Digger Scam: Water Authority of Fiji. Last year in June, it was alleged that WAF spent more than $33 million to hire a digger for 15 months.

https://fijisun.com.fj/2019/01/30/alleged-digger-scam-waf/

 

SOLOMON ISLANDS:

Anti-Corruption efforts yield positive results.  Solomon Islands is the only country in the Asia Pacific region that improved its score the most from 2017-2018 with plus 5 points in the Corruption Perception Index (CPI).

http://www.solomonstarnews.com/index.php/news/national/item/21328-good-showing

Suspected fraud in Henderson land dealing. The Commissioner of Lands Allan McNeil said that his office will retrieve a controversial Fixed Term Estate (FTE) allegedly sold by its suspended Commissioner to an Asian while the court is dealing with the newly constructed building next to the airport runway at Henderson.

http://www.solomonstarnews.com/index.php/news/national/item/21291-move-to-retrieve-land

Solomons MPs given deadline to account for funds.  Outgoing MPs in Solomon Islands have been given until 15 February to account for millions of dollars in grant funding given for developing their constituencies in 2018.

https://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/381357/solomons-mps-given-deadline-to-account-for-funds

 

SAMOA:

Olo responds to challenge on corruption evidence. Member of Parliament, Olo Fiti Vaai, has urged the Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sailele Malielegaoi to check reports from the Auditor General and the Audit Office during the past 10 years for evidence of Government corruption.

http://www.sobserver.ws/en/31_01_2019/local/40677/Olo-responds-to-challenge-on-corruption-evidence.htm

 

To know more about the UN Pacific Regional Anti-Corruption Project please contact the team members:

Annika Wythes, Regional Anti-Corruption Adviser, UNODC, annika.wythes@un.org

Mihaela Stojkoska, Anti-Corruption Specialist - Pacific, UNDP, mihaela.stojkoska@undp.org

Maria Lee, Peace & Development Administrative Assistant, UNDP/UNODC, maria.lee@undp.org

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