APEC corruption allegations unlikely to amount to anything - Transparency

1:56 pm on 21 December 2018

Transparency International is doubtful anything concrete will come of corruption allegations against the Papua New Guinea government's excesses in hosting APEC last month.

APEC Port Moresby, PNG

Photo: RNZ Pacific/ Koroi Hawkins

The government indicated it would cost around $US119 million to host the prestigious global event but that figure is understood to have more than doubled.

Public criticism of PNG's hosting on APEC has centred around hundreds of luxury vehicles purchased for the event as well as spending on infrastructure for the capital Port Moresby.

There was concern that the government borrowed beyond its means, particularly from China, to prepare for hosting world leaders in November.

Transparency PNG's Lawrence Stephens said it had been refreshing to see the amount of public criticism and media scrutiny around APEC.

"I believe that the Chief Ombudsman would be looking into some of the issues of procurement that took place during APEC. And I am constantly hearing people complaining that the lack of medicine or lack of other public supplies are due to the excesses of the APEC gathering."

But he said it was unlikely any of it will translate to corruption convictions.

"Again it would be good to see an outcome, but those sorts of outcomes depend on how many people can put the time into seriously studying what has happened and seriously making recommendations or simply uncovering information."

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