Tribunal rules MP misused K2.7mil

Main Stories, National

The National, Tuesday 17th July, 2012

A LEADERSHIP tribunal hearing the misconduct in office has found Bougainville regional MP Fidelis Semoso guilty of misappropriating K2.7 million.
The charges related to the South Bougainville feeder road project funds and were heard at a tribunal in Waigani, National Capital District yesterday.
Headed by Justice Salatiel Lenalia and assisted by senior magistrates Nerrie Eliakim and Ignatius Kurei, the tribunal ruled on 14 allegations under six categories against Semoso.
The tribunal found him guilty on charges in three categories relating to misapplication of K2.7 million from the road project funds.
One of the categories related to an alleged sexual assault and torture of Theresemarie Hani Hapoot. The tribunal also found him not guilty on three categories, one of which related to personally benefiting from public funds. There were allegations of gaining a contract under false pretence and failure to disclose interest.
The tribunal also considered his right to stand in public office and granted him time to campaign in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.
But the elections preliminary running results from the Electoral Commission since yesterday showed that he was trailing four others in the race for Bougainville regional or provincial seat.
The tribunal will decide on his penalties on Thursday.