Cooks PM: 10M China Gift To Be Used For School Construction

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Follows controversy over spending prioritization

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, August 3, 2015) – The Cook Islands Prime Minister, Henry Puna, is promising a ten million dollar gift from China is destined to be spent building Nikao school.

Henry Puna says the government is expecting to be handed the money by China during the 50th anniversary of self-government celebrations.

Mr Puna says Cook Islands officials are working hard towards seeing the funding agreement with China signed either on August 4 or 5.

Cook Islands News reports a row over construction of a new school has been brewing for most of the year.

The governments purchase of $600,000 worth of new cars to be used temporarily by VIPs visiting Rarotonga for the 50th anniversary festivities, provoked outrage among some sections of the community.

The newspaper says it was deluged with complaints from Nikao residents, many of whom said the $600,000 would have been better spent on the school.

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