19 Apr 2013

TI alleges Lilo tops up Solomons aid fund from Taiwan

6:40 pm on 19 April 2013

Transparency International in Solomon Islands says the government of Gordon Darcy Lilo has surreptitiously raided public funds to top up a shortfall in the Constituency Development Funds given as aid by Taiwan.

Taiwan provides the money allocated given to MPs to spend at their discretion, but after years of international criticism it now demands that MPs show how they have spent the money.

Transparency says 17 MPs have failed to submit their acquittals for last year so Taiwan has withheld nearly a million US dollars from them.

The watchdog agency has praised Taiwan's responsible attitude but says the prime minister has side stepped this move by taking money from the country's budget to make the payments.