13 Nov 2007

Solomon Islands Prime Minister hits out at his former Finance Minister

11:47 am on 13 November 2007

The Solomon Islands Prime Minister, Manasseh Sogavare, has gone on attack against a former minister who is heading a drive to have him resign.

He has accused the former Finance Minister, Gordon Darcy Lilo of using public funds to buy the support of other MPs.

The Prime Minister claims that reports showing Government cash reserves are almost exhausted support his claim.

He also raises questions over the apparent failure of Mr Lilo to pay out funds allocated for the tsunami devastated region of Western Province.

And the Prime Minister claims that Mr Lilo had also tried to extort money from logging companies and accused him of various other allegedly corrupt actions.

Mr Lilo was Finance Minister until last week when he was made Justice Minister - but he resigned that role at the weekend along with 8 other ministers who are calling on the Prime Minister to resign.