The former French Polynesian president, Gaston Flosse, has defended the
use of public funds during the period he was in power as he and several
other politicians try to avoid an order to reimburse three million US
A probe by the French accounts office has identified and confirmed a set
of expenses which it says matched no real activity linked to the running
of his government in the years 1996 to 2004.
It says it found a hidden way of accounting which allowed for the illicit
withdrawal of public funds and which it described as a system designed to
Last week, Mr Flosse failed to have the case dismissed by the French
supreme court whose decision means the matter is to be referred to the
French Polynesian assembly for debate.
He has now also written to all assembly members, affirming that he did no
wrong, and he has just appeared before the assembly's finance committee
which however has rejected his explanations.
One assembly member, Hiro Tefaarere, has dismissed Mr Flosse's appeal and
called it surreal, ironic and pathetic.