26 Feb 2013

Former Solomons premier welcomes audit amid misappropriation claims

9:45 am on 26 February 2013

The former premier of Solomon Islands' Guadalcanal province says he believes an audit will prove him innocent of any wrongdoing in public office.

Anthony Veke resigned last week, 18 months out from the end of his term, amid allegations that he misused public funds.

Mr Veke, who has been replaced by the man who held the position before him, Stephen Panga, says he resigned to stop the provincial government becoming unstable.

"With the assembly there are groups that are alleging that I have misused funds and misused my power as premier, which I totally categorically deny, that I have not done what members of the assembly have alleged in the past days. There is no major dislike of my leadership."

Anthony Veke says the leadership change will cost the provincial government almost 70-thousand US dollars - money he says it can ill afford to spend on such matters.