29 Sep 2004

French Polynesian Government to audit spending during the Flosse era

1:49 pm on 29 September 2004

The French Polynesian government has begun a financial audit of the last six years.

The economy minister, Emile Vanfasse, says the probe is - above all - aimed at looking at what happened to public funds under the administration of the territory's last president, Gaston Flosse.

Mr Vanfasse says the emphasis will be examination of spending on personnel, investments and grants.

He says the audit will be particularly precise on large public works projects, where millions of dollars were spent.

Mr Vanfasse says he was stunned to find Mr Flosse's presidency had employed more than 7-hundred and 50 people, which he described as a 'parallel administration'.

A panel of French auditors has been selected for the inquiry and its conclusions are expected to be made public in the new year.