28 Jul 2016

Cook Islands PM disputes corruption reports

1:04 pm on 28 July 2016

The Cook Islands Prime Minister Henry Puna has taken issue with recent media reports suggesting there are concerns with corruption within the country's leadership.

The reports came after the then leader of the opposition One Cook Islands party, Teina Bishop, was convicted of corruption.

The report suggested the Financial Intelligence Unit had conducted investigations of Mr Puna, his Finance Minister, Mark Brown and the Deputy Prime Minister, Teariki Heather, while another MP had recently been found guilty of bribery under the Electoral Act.

But Mr Puna said there was nothing to hide about his government's activities.

He said everything was above board and they were fully committed to administering with accountability and transparency.

He told the Cook Islands News that to suggest the Cooks' leadership was operating under a cloud of corrupt practices was false, and 'nothing short of smear-mongering'.