20 Feb 2009

A former PNG Governor charged with misappropriation

2:12 pm on 20 February 2009

A former Governor of the Southern Highlands in Papua New Guinea, Hami Yawari, has been arrested and charged with two counts of misappropriating more than 110 thousand US dollars of the province's funds.

The Post Courier reports police saying that in 2005, while he was governor, Mr Yawari approved payment more than 40 thousand US dollars to the current MP for Kagua Erave, James Lagea.

Mr Lagea is alleged to have deposited the money in his account before withdrawing it and returning it to Mr Yawari.

In a similar fashion police say another cheque for nearly 80 thousand dollars was paid to a man called Harry Komba, who also deposited the money into his account,

and later withdrew it and handed it over to Mr Yawari.

The paper says detectives who made the arrest claimed Mr Yawari had a tendency to use other people as conduits to misappropriate money from

the state.

Two years the National Government had suspended Mr Yawari's provincial Government for several months, and sent in the military and officials, amid concerns at poor governance.