Councillors opt for clarity

The National, Friday July 15th, 2016

SHORTENED terms in office plus delays in district funds was far from ideal for the delivery of five-year development plans, a ward councillor from Lae says.
Lae Urban ward three councillor Mcquinn Douglas, speaking on behalf of councillors in Lae, queried why their terms were cut.
Douglas said the Electoral Commission’s decision to bring forward the election of ward councillors, presidents and lord mayors with the provincial and general elections was unfair to them.
“This will now give us four years in office,  mandated leaders are supposed to serve five years. Douglas said.
“We all have a five-year development plan and so far it has not being implemented, grants are not arriving at the right time through the Lae district or the city council and we are becoming spectators at the moment.
“We are still waiting for our projects passed by DDA to be implemented despite our terms being  shortened to 2017.
“What legislation of the parliament allows the government to shorten our terms? The national and provincial governments must clarify why our terms have been shortened and if we are going to be compensated for the lost year in office and the injustice done.
“We are just observing our plans and wondering when they will be implemented through our DSIP funds and LLG SIPS, and to this day we don’t know when it is going to come.
“We feel we have been mistreated as a mandated power and that will only allow future councillors terms to be shortened.
“We have been continuously following up with the Lae CEO’s office but to this day there has been no grants or funds.
“The provincial government must fast-track funds so we can be able to carry out our projects.