Minister Charles Bastienne said “No fire, No smoke”

‘Innocent until proven guilty’

This newspaper has been following development in regards to the allegation of corruption made against the former Minister of Home Affairs, very closely. We have also spoken to the security company at the centre of this controversy to establish the facts about this situation because this newspaper is totally against any form of corruption. The editor quit opposition party politics because they had become corrupt like this government and when he left they targeted him to try silencing him, they have failed.

We are of the view that corruption in government and out is almost entirely responsible for the exaggerated high costs of living. This country is a very small country with a tiny economy and corruption is having a direct impact on the country’s financial matters and it is affecting the ordinary Seselwa the most, especially those on low incomes.

According to the local agency that did the recruitment for the Nepalese security guards for the Montagne Posee Prison; They also told us that the Minister was never part of any negotiation for money, other than the initial US500 paid for recruitment fees for the 19 Nepalese who arrived in the country. As far as the recruitment process was concerned. The Minister never received any money from the local agency or the Nepalese agency - there is no proof of that ever happening. If there any evidence to that effect this newspaper would like to see it and we will help nail the perpetrators.

However, all indications are that the recruitment agency in Nepal could be guilty of a serious case of human trafficking. They were charging an extortion fee of US8000dollars per head to the Nepalese security officers – who had to take out loans to be able to pay to come work in Seychelles. The allegations of corruption against Minister Bastienne were made without checking the real facts in this matter, with the full intention to create maximum damage to the credibility of the Minister and the government of President Faure. According to a comment made by an employee of the local security company involved in that matter,“the attack on Minister Bastienne was politically motivated by people who are known to have killed many people at Grand Police, maybe they should start telling the truth about their activities when they were the henchman for this brutal regime during the one party era”.

We are also of the view that Minister Charles Bastienne is being targeted because he had the guts to go after a big businessman (LDS benefactor) who scammed government of many millions of rupees in GOP fees.

Minister Bastienne has stated on National Television; “if I was interested in corruption, why would Charles Bastienne go out of his way and reduce the salary of the Nepalese officers from USD1,200 to USD700. The Government through the Police and Prison is employing around ... 200 Nepalese Officers, which would save the Government SR16 Million per year. Is this the corruption they are talking about?”

“Now that President Faure has asked me to work to reduce the cost of construction in the country in my new portfolio, and the fact that I have been told that there are cartels in this country, will I then be accused of corruption? If such is the case, then I am more determined to do it as I will be doing it for my country!”

As it stands now there is absolutely no evidence that Minister Charles Bastienne did anything wrong in this particular case, however, if fresh evidence do come to light it will be published by this newspaper. We are appealing to people with information on the matter and on corruption generally to come forward, your identity will be protected. We need to fight corruption wherever it exist in Seychelles; in the private and public sector. This is the only way to combat the high costs of living.



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