The National, Wednesday, April 27, 2011
By YVONNE HAIP
COMMUNITY leaders in the Pangia district of Southern Highlands claimed their council chambers building was sold for a reported K2,000 to a subsistence farmer.
Although rundown, the council chambers building was being used by the East Pangia and South Wiru LLGs for meetings before they were divided into separate LLGs.
The building, located on state land, housed the councillor’s office, as well as offices of the council clerk, pay master, and council advisers, and was being used by the East Pangia LLG.
The leaders, who did not want to be named, claimed the building had been bought for K2,000 by a subsistence farmer, who was a carpenter by profession.
They claimed most of the building was stripped by the carpenter who took the materials away.
In addition, negotiations were still going on with the Pangia Investment Corporation, which had machinery in the council chambers yard in 2006.
The leaders questioned whether proper procedures like valuing and normal tender processes were followed before the sale.
They asked if the sale had been approved by all councillors and whether the money from the sale was being kept in a councillor’s trust account.
They said the building should have been renovated as it was the official meeting place for councillors, instead of being sold.
They called for local MP Peter O’Neill, provincial government and relevant authorities to investigate the sale.
The leaders wanted to know whether the sale breached any laws or if it complied with all LLG guidelines.