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Jul 29, 1998

Musa: P.U.P. will put passport sales to referendum

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In yesterday’s newscast we spoke to Opposition leader Said Musa about the report of the Commission of Inquiry which severely criticized his actions while he was Minister of Foreign Affairs. While Musa defended his performance and called the report just one more example of political witch hunting, what we neglected to include yesterday was the P.U.P. leader’s plans, should he become Prime Minister, for any future passport sales. His solution this time around, is a little bit different.

Said Musa, Leader, P.U.P.

“Clearly it’s a matter that has become very controversial, very demotive matter in the minds of our people. I personally sense that our people do not like the whole concept of sale passports or economic citizenship. As I try to explain to you today what we attempted to do in our last term in office was an Economic Investment Programme, because it can be forcefully argued that through granting a person who is prepared to invest in your country nationality, it’s one of the ingredients of providing security to that person’s investment. And I think there is still some merit in that. But the way it has gone on, I don’t want to go back to the 84-89 “bucket sale” of passports, I don’t want to go into the fact that right now there are serious allegations that passports are being sold to the Russian mafia, even today, and this is coming from high level diplomatic people telling us this who are very concerned. Clearly it’s a very controversial matter and our party has taken a position that we are going to let the people decide about this. We are going to pass a referendum act, they’re gonna vote on it and if they decide end this thing one way or the other we will end it.”

With regard to the full report of the Commission of Inquiry, that document has only minutes ago been delivered to us from the Prime Minister’s office. We’ll check it out for tomorrow’s newscast.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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