Missing funds delay aquittals, Allen says

The National, Thursday July 7th, 2016

THE Unggai-Bena district in Eastern Highlands delayed presenting its acquittals because funds tended to go missing from Treasury at this time of the year, according to MP and Lands and Physical Planning Minister Benny Allen.
“The reason we came around this time of the year was that we discovered  towards the end of last year, this is happening all around the country – money going missing from the Treasury,” Allen claimed.
When presenting last year’s acquittal reports last Thursday to the Department of Implementation and Rural Development, he said some cheques were found to have been drawn without the approval of the district administrator.
“We came to a point where something was going wrong, so we checked and found that there were a few cheques drawn which ended up with the suppliers,” Allen said.
“We managed to pick up these cheques only to find out that they didn’t go through the right process. There was no approval by the DDA (district development authority) chairman or even by the district administrator.”
Allen said there were four cheques in question, totalling about K26,000. He feared that this was happening in other districts.
Allen said the nine Treasury staff members in his district were replaced.
“Millions (of kina) are going out without being noticed and that needs to be tightened up. A system of checks and balances has to be put in place so we can easily track down this kind of transactions.”
Allen praised provincial administrator Solomon Tato for establishing a project management committee.