Thursday May 28 2020
Prime Minister Hon. James Marape, has reiterated that K28 million spent on the UBS Loan Commission of Inquiry (COI) is nothing against the backdrop of Papua New Guinea losing K3 billion in the process.
He said this today when responding to calls by Opposition Leader, Hon. Belden Namah, for the disbanding of the UBS COI.
Namah said the COI was an unnecessary waste of time and public money.
The Opposition Leader called attention to the existence of the Ombudsman Commission’s Report into the UBS Loan saga and called upon Government and relevant law enforcement agencies like Ombudsman Commission and National Fraud and Anti-Corruption Directorate to implement its findings and recommendations.
Prime Minister Marape said he had answered all the questions raised by Namah in the February 2020 session of Parliament when answering questions by Deputy Opposition Leader, Dr Allan Marat.
“If Namah wants the COI to be disbanded, he obviously wants to protect someone, or some people, who have been implicated in the Ombudsman Commission Report,” Prime Minister Marape said.
“The COI is not an unnecessary waste of time and public money as he would like us to believe.
“It is no secret that the country had suffered greatly over the last six years since former Prime Minister, Hon. Peter O’Neill, took out the loan.
“We are now worse for that unnecessary loan which has affected all the people of this country.
“If we do not have this COI, we will never know the truth about the UBS loan, to set us free from the shackles of the past.
“I am implicated in the Ombudsman Commission Report, however, have set up this COI which will establish if I was in the wrong or not,” Mr Marape said.
Prime Minister Marape said the COI would probe much deeper than the Ombudsman Commission Report.
“The Ombudsman Commission did not look at the criminality and legality of the entire transaction,” he said.
“The COI will probe deeper into the person, or persons, that the good Opposition leader is so keen on protecting.
“The truth will then set us free,” Mr Marape said.