Get court order, contractors told

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EDUCATION Secretary Dr Uke Kombra has advised contractors demanding payment for construction work carried out in various education facilities in Port Moresby to take the matter to court.
“The legal advice that I have received is for you to go to the court and get a court order. Only a court order will make us pay the genuine contractors,” he said.
The contractors had been demanding for years to be paid for the various work they had done at education facilities in Port Moresby. Some had been waiting for payment since 2008.
Kombra told the contractors that some public servants had “in one way or another” misled the contractors.
“They are saying that there is work and if you submit your project proposals, they will approve it. Then you went ahead and did the work and now we have these claims,” he said.
Kombra said he and Education Minister Nick Kuman had submitted the claims contained in an audit report to the National Executive Council in 2016.
“But the NEC didn’t believe our submission, saying that a lot of procurement processes were not followed and some claims were not genuine. Therefore, the NEC gave instruction for us to take this matter up with the Solicitor-General’s Office. So in this communication process with the Solicitor-General’s Office, some Government officers were misleading the contractors about money released to the Education Department to be paid out to the contractors.