23 Jun 2005

French Polynesian presidency defends cabinet director amid media criticism

8:15 pm on 23 June 2005

The French Polynesian presidency has issued a statement to defend the director of cabinet, Patrick Leboucher, following the disclosure in a monthly magazine about the compensation he won for his improper dismissal last year.

The statement was issued earlier this month and reprinted in the latest edition of the To'ere weekly.

It says President Oscar Temaru has full confidence in Mr Leboucher who has successfully led several high level missions, including in his role as representative at the Monaco summer ball.

This follows a report in the Tahiti Pacifique magazine which says he won the equivalent of 14 annual pays of the minimum wage for failing to get a proper notice when the Temaru government fell last year.

He got the compensation and was rehired by Mr Temaru to the same position.

The magazine said 21 other senior staff followed suit and got a total of 400,000 US dollars of tax payers funds.

Mr Temaru is currently in France as part of efforts to negotiate a new assistance package.