No request to China for gratuity payments: PRO

The Prime Minister’s Office, through its Public Relations Officer, Hilaire Bule, says there is no request from the Vanuatu Government to the Government of China through its embassy in Vanuatu to inject funds to pay gratuities for members of parliament.

He said such allegation undermines the friendly relations between China and Vanuatu.

Mr Bule stated this after allegations circulating on social media that China would pay each MP Vt5 million as part of their gratuity payment.

“As we all know, aid from China and assistance projects to Vanuatu focus in the sectors of infrastructure education and medical care.

“The purpose of China’s aid and assistance to Vanuatu is for everyone to benefit from it and to promote development in Vanuatu,” he said.

He mentioned projects such as the Tanna and Malekula roads, Malapoa College buildings, National Sports Complex at Korman- all built through assistance from China.

The Government PRO says China always respects the Vanuatu Government, the decision of the people and choices, whenever such a request for assistance is made.

Bule says the Office of the Prime Minister as of yesterday has not made any request to the Embassy of China in Port Vila.

He said a formal complaint will be lodged with the police to investigate the allegations raised on social media’s Yumi Toktok Stret News that China will give Vt5 million and a vehicle to each of the 52 members of parliament.

The prime minister’s office stated that it believes not one of the 52 MPs will receive any such items as an example has already been set were former members of parliament were imprisoned for bribery after receiving money in their bank accounts.

The Embassy of China in Vanuatu was contacted for comment but was told that the press officer was in a meeting.

Daily Post understands an official from the Vanuatu Government has also met with the Embassy of China yesterday morning to discuss the issue.

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