15 Sep 2014

Complaint lodged in Tahiti over resort funding

7:16 am on 15 September 2014

French Polynesia's opposition says it is lodging a complaint with the public prosecutor over the use of public funds to get tenders for the Mahana Beach Resort on Tahiti.

Edouard Fritch

Edouard Fritch Photo: RNZI Walter Zweifel

The announcement was made by Richard Tuheiava, who was the unsuccessful candidate in the weekend presidential election that saw Edouard Fritch replace Gaston Flosse.

Mr Tuheiava has questioned the process and claims that 300,000 US dollars was paid to each of the three bidders for the project, saying crazy sums have been spent without hesitation.

He says so far 21 million US dollars has been spent on the hotel, casino and shopping complex on Tahiti, which is estimated to cost 2.7 billion US dollars to complete.

The project has been pushed as a means to create jobs and attract tourists by Flosse, who lost office this month because of a corruption conviction that also entailed a suspended jail sentence and a 170,000 US dollar fine.