Supreme Court dismisses Salwai application

A court case against the former Prime Minister, Charlot Salwai, is set to continue, after the Supreme Court in Port Vila on Monday dismissed an application for a permanent stay of the proceedings.

The Supreme Court decision relates to abuse of process charges of corruption, bribery and perjury against the former Prime Minister who is an MP for Pentecost and four other MPs and former MPs.

The four others charged are: Luganville MP and former Agriculture Minister, Matai Seremaiah; Education Minister and MP for Epi, Seule Simeon; and former MPs Tomker Netvunei and Jerome Ludvaune.

The defendants filed for the permanent Stay Order to prevent the Magistrates Court from hearing the case on the grounds there had been a delay in the case proceeding to court.

The court proceedings started in the Magistrates Court prior to the 2020 National Election. The defendants are accused of illegally making ministerial and parliamentary secretary appointments in 2016, allegedly to avoid a vote of no confidence.

The Supreme Court has ordered the Magistrates Court to continue and complete the Preliminary Investigation of the case.

The case has been remitted to the Magistrates Court for the Preliminary Inquiry to be heard at 2pm on 29 June.

The Supreme Court ordered the existing bail conditions should continue until then.

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