7 Nov 2005

Investigation to be launched into Fiji's Immigration department

2:31 pm on 7 November 2005

There is to be an investigation into the running of Fiji's Immigration department after the suspension of its director and allegations of bribery against some officers.

The acting chief executive officer of the Public Service Commission, Tom Lee, says there is deep concern about the lack of leadership in the department.

And, he says some officers are known to have accepted bribes at border control, in the processing of passports and for visas.

Mr Lee says the Commission decided, in conjunction with the Home Affairs Ministry, to launch an investigation into the department's activities.

"In fact, it will look at the operations of the Immigration department, and its systems and processes to specifically hone in on those reports of breaches of the public service values and code of conduct by officers whose names have been provided to the commission."

Mr Lee says he believes there are only isolated cases with which they are dealing with, not a systemic failure in the department.

The border control functions were taken away from Immigration officials some months ago and handed over to customs.