Rural Development Party (RDP) President, MP Jay Ngwele said he is filing a bribery complaint with the police for court proceedings against the government for offering a position to one of his party members.
Ngwele says another complaint will be filed with the Ombudsman for investigation.
MP Ngwele said that on July 28, 2018 all members of his RDP signed a motion of no confidence against Prime Minister Charlot Salwai, A memorandum of Agreement for RDP MPs for solidarity and an attestation confirming their intentions for a motion to change the government.
He said that on August 8, 2018 MP Tom Noam was appointed Parliamentary Secretary (PS) to the Ministry of Climate Change after he was offered the position allegedly with seven other MPs.
Mr Ngwele alleged that the position offered to the vice president of RDP is unconstitutional and illegal as there was no budget allocated and appropriated by parliament for such appointment.
He said that this is just an abuse of powers under the Official Salary Act where now the number of PS, eight in total is more than half of the cabinet ministers.
He said that the Council of Ministers under the Prime Minister Tabimasmas made appointments with assistance of the State Law making sworn statements or oath for MP Noam as an official PS.
He said that this was done with full knowledge by knowing that there is no budget for the position until the second Extra Ordinary Session of Parliament in 2018 where a supplementary budget would be appropriate as has been the practice by the Salwai-led government for such appointments under Official Salary Act to be remunerated.
The RDP President alleged that other previous appointments of seven PS since 2016 and onwards followed similar illegal and unconstitutional practice which is in breach of the Public Finance and Economic Management Act and total abuse of powers of the Prime Minister.
“When the motion of No Confidence was lodged on November 22, 2018, I was disappointed to note that a letter of withdrawal of signature by Tom Noam was also filed with the other MPs to withdraw them from the motion,” he said.
“These letters were prepared by the office of the Speaker by other Deputy Speakers and MPs and given to the Honourable MPs involved to sign including Mr Noam.”
Mr Ngwele said that the actions by the Speaker and his cohorts went as far as claiming that the motion was not in order and were challenged by the Leader of Opposition and the court ruled that the motion is in order and ordered to have it debated today at 4pm.
Ngwele said that when the case was lodged, Mr Noam and MP Edwin Macreveth retracted their signatures for the motion and these were used as the evidences in the Opposition’s Constitutional application.
He alleged that the government’s offer of a position is deemed as bribery to maintain the MP’s support for the current government that is facing the looming motion of no confidence.