18 Aug 2005

Vanuatu deports Singaporean businessman who offered ministers inducements

10:47 am on 18 August 2005

The Vanuatu government has deported a Singaporean businessman who was allegedly offering bribes to ministers and MPs.

The Port Vila presse reports that William Chong was purporting to represent a business group called the Lions of Asia, which had proposed some unlikely investments in Vanuatu, including an international airport on Malekula Island.

Vanuatu's minister for internal affairs, George Wells, said that Mr Chong was considered a risk to National Security.

The finance minister, Moana Carcasses, alleged that Mr Chong had told him he was prepared to offer the prime minister US$200,000, ministers US$150,000, and members of parliament, US$75,000 each, if they signed documents approving his projects.

Mr Chong, who was once appointed Vanuatu's trade commissioner in Singapore by the former Prime Minister, Serge Vohor, was deported on Monday.