Govt settled Unesco debt, says Sinivin

National, Normal

The National, Monday July 22nd, 2013

 THE Government has settled a K643,000 debt owed to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) since 2008, according to Education Vice-Minister Gisuwat Siniwin.

In a statement to Parliament, Siniwin said the continuity of programmes under the PNG-UNESCO partnership was paramount. 

He said the PNG National Commission for UNESCO received a substantial amount of funds for the 2004-07 period for projects but failed to provide the reports to the UNESCO head office in Paris. 

Siniwin did not clarify the cause of the debt but said the office owed the money when it was elevated to a secretariat status in 2008. It could not repay the money then. 

“When the PNG Commission for UNESCO was elevated to autonomous status, it carried forward a debt of K643,000 owed to UNESCO,” Siniwin said. 

He said the Government recently settled the amount, paving the way for more UNESCO assistance to reach communities by supporting government projects through its PNG office. 

“For the last 30 years PNG has delivered projects through enhancement capacity building programmes supporting the government priorities in these main areas at no cost to the country,” he said.