3 May 2010

TI Solomons considers complaint to Taiwan over MP funding

8:05 am on 3 May 2010

Transparency International is considering making a complaint to the Taiwanese government after funds were paid out early to members of the Solomon Islands paliament just before it was dissolved last month.

The chairman of TI Solomon Islands, Bob Pollard, says the Taiwanese-backed Rural Constituency Development Funds have become slush money with contituents going to MP's houses if they want to finance local projects.

He says while not all MP's are corrupt the money was initially meant to help local development, but with no accountability in place, it's time for the so-called slush funds to go.

"Rather than fixing the problem of having an ineffective government they've just compounded it by making the member a manager of discretionary funds. So the funds have to go. The government has to get back to its main game which is legislation and ensuring we have an efficient government which delivers goods and services to the people."

Bob Pollard says the RCDF has become the bane of MPs' lives with some politicans realising in an election year if they don't manage the funds at arm's length their homes are always full with people wanting money.