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PNG PM Marape calls on Intelligence Organisations to investigate transactions

PNG  Prime Minister   James Marape says he is surprised to read an investigative report published by foreign media on alleged financial transactions involving former senior managers of PNG Ports and an Australian businessman

PM Marape says he also has no knowledge of the alleged financial transactions or the relationships between former senior management of PNG Ports, the PNG Ports operator International Container Terminal Services International (ICTSI) or Australian businessman Don Matheson as mentioned in the report circulated.

A joint investigative report was published on March 2 by Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) and Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) on a Manila-based multinational ports operator, ICTSI, that allegedly transferred funds into Matheson’s Singapore company account that then paid perks to senior officials of PNG Ports.

The Prime Minister said the report, published and circulated online, had nothing to do with him as he had no knowledge of this issue.

“I have called for our National Intelligence Organisation and International Revenue Commission to investigate the allegations of impropriety and corruption, and ask the publishers of the report to tabulate what ever evidence they may have,” PM Marape said.

“ I am very concerned that this report implicates our best-performing State Owned Enterprise. As I speak, Minister Hon. William Duma, has  started an internal review on this matter because we have a substantial infrastructure and operational improvement programme going on in PNG Ports.

“As a senior member of the Royal Port Moresby Golf club, I meet and greet, and play with any one who walks into the club, including Mr Matheson.I have no much detail of his work or business, apart from the fact that he was a town planner and previously sponsor of Waghi Tumbe rugby league team.

“According to the report, OCCRP has found no evidence of wrongdoing by me, as Prime Minister. Therefore, to set the record straight, I never knew Mr Matheson’s other backgrounds as indicated by the authors of this article and am equally surprised as well.

“This report has serious implications on our PNG Ports Corporation, hence, I will direct a full investigation into the allegations by Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC).

“In the last three years of being in Government, we have set up ICAC as an indication of our commitment to fight corruption, and we will look into this case from the corruption

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