20 Oct 2004

Vanuatu prime minister slams Transparency International

2:30 pm on 20 October 2004

The Vanuatu Prime Minister, Serge Vohor, has launched a stinging attack on the local chapter of the anti corruption group Transparency International, ot TIV.

He told local media that the organisation is foreign controlled and creating instability.

TIV and other groups under the banner of the Vanuatu Non Government Organisations, or VANGO, this week presented a petition calling for more public dialogue over the attempts to change the constitution.

The Government says TIV should speak with the Prime Minister before going to the media, but the body says their requests for meetings are always turned down.

VANGO's Henry Vira says the criticism of TIV could also be directed at VANGO because it is leading the campaign against the amendments.

"So we feel that maybe the comments directed particularly at TIV were not appropriate in this, as far as the work concerned over the last few days particularly, because VANGO is the one that is leading the work on the petition."

Henry Vira