23 Jun 2004

Solomon Islands politician accuses outsiders of being involved in corruption

10:40 am on 23 June 2004

A Solomon Islands politician, Joses Tuhanuku, is accusing some diplomatic missions in the country of being involved in political corruption.

Mr Tuhanuku, who is also vice-chairman of the Intervention taskforce, did not provide any names or specific instances in which it had occurred.

But, he says corruption is endemic and involves outsiders.

"I'm very distressed that there are diplomatic officers in Solomon Islands who are very much involved in this corruption - to keep certain people in power because they want them to be there. So, actually corruption in Solomon Islands is not only business houses and Solomon Islands people, it involves a lot of diplomatic officers, embassies, high commissions or whatever."

Mr Tuhanuku says Solomon Islanders accept that they were wrong but there are a lot of outsiders who don't accept, or who are not going to publicly say, they were wrong too.

He says they have to think again because they are part of the big problems facing the country.

Mr Tuhanuku made the comments at the Winds of Change conference being held in Honiara.