By EDDIE OSIFELO
HIGH Court officials have been accused of requesting and illegally receiving payments worth around $83,300 from a party in a case.
Those reportedly benefitted include Jeff Hou, Registrar Myonnie Tutua and and a Sherriff officer, Moses Inomae.
According to records produced by economist George Kosui, who has investigated the issue, Inomae allegedly received a total of $65,500 in his name.
The Registrar was accused of receiving a total of $15,000 while Sheriff Jeff Hou allegedly got $5,000.
Kosui said Solomon Security Services has been requested by these officers to pay them fees whenever they discuss issues relating to the court case.
“Although the payments are small, which might be the reason for losing the case, the actions by these officers are deemed corrupt, unethical and have contributed to compromising the independence of the Judiciary system of Solomon Islands,” Kosui said.
“Payments to High Court Officers totaling $83,000 have been recorded,” he added.
Responding to the allegation, Registrar of High Court, Tutua said this is the first time that such allegation has been brought to our attention.
“We will require as usual that whoever has the allegation to do the right thing and lodge a formal complaint to us with all the necessary details.
“We will in turn instigate our own enquiry into the matter and decide what appropriate action needs to be taken,” she said.