Public Prosecutor’s Office abandons case against Tongan and Samoan over Phocea citizenship fraud

Both VBTC Radio News and Daily Post give prominence today to the abandonment by the Prosecution of any illegal citizenship case against the Tongan and Samoan associated with the yacht Phocea. The Prosecution presented significant evidence of flagrant irregularities in the Citizenship Commission but were questioned over their intention to use the evidence of a third person accused in the matter, a ni-Vanuatu who had pleaded guilty. He is to appear in court tomorrow for sentencing. The Prosecution then immediately abandoned the case, having failed to establish any wrongdoing on the part of the Polynesian defendants.

The Director of the Department of Women’s Affairs, Dorosday Kenneth, says good leadership essential in making proper use of a large regional Australian fund to promote gender equality, says VBTC News. A$320 million was promised by Australia at the recent Pacific Islands Forum, to be used over the next ten years in support of women. A US$30 million grant from the United States will also assist gender equality.

The head of the West Papuan National Coalition for Liberation (WPNCL) in Vanuatu, Andy Ayamiseba, speaks of the disappointment of WPNCL that Pacific leaders were silent on the matter of atrocities and violence in West Papua at the recent Pacific Islands Forum meeting. This will not stop their determination to continue the struggle, he said.

Pacific Buzz from the Pacific Institute of Public Policy today provides an excellent summary of the issues of the Pacific Islands Forum.

MPs Charlot Salwai, Steven Kalsakau and Raphaël Worwor will not be able to contest the elections using the name UMP for Change, the Supreme Court has declared. They have already been expelled by the UMP Congress, a Daily Post story states. The judgement permits them still to stand for Parliament, but not in affiliation with the UMP name.

Daily Post has a front page story concerning zero-tariff status for Vanuatu exports to China. Newly arrived Ambassador Xie Bohua is depicted shaking hands with Trade Minister Ham Lini after an exchange of notes in the matter. Both hope there will be exports to China from Vanuatu to take advantage of the concession. No mention was made of any reciprocal gesture or offer.

A Tanna hotel development by Dinh Van Than which was earlier reported to be located in a part of Tanna where such development is banned, has reportedly been given the go-ahead by the chiefs responsible for the area.


One Comment on “Public Prosecutor’s Office abandons case against Tongan and Samoan over Phocea citizenship fraud”

  1. monty lindstrom says:

    Does anyone know where on Tanna Dinh’s planned hotel will be built?