The National, Wednesday November 6th, 2013
PUBLIC servants have been accused of creating “ghost names” and double-dipping from public funds as land mediators and village court officials.
The accusation was made by patrol officer Alpha Mare from Sialum, in the Tewae-Siassi district, during a land mediators’ induction at Nasingalatuc village, in Yabem-Mape, Finschhafen, Morobe.
Giving an example, he said one land mediator in Sialum was named “Silas Raphael”.
“I investigated and verified that there is no such land mediator by the name of Silas Raphael in Tewae-Siassi,” Mare said.
He said someone created the name as that of a land mediator and had been collecting quarterly allowances over the years.
“This is totally uncalled for and provincial divisions need to be mindful and thoroughly check and confirm names with district and LLG officers on the ground,” Mare said.
He said some clever public servants had been creating ghost names, got them gazetted through the government payroll system and had been collecting allowances.
Mare accompanied new Sialuml mediators Rocken Kutiya, Jowa Waiwai and Simon Yamben to the induction at Nasingalatuc village.
Sialum deputy president Billy Bawetine was sworn in by Commissioner for Oaths Tony Ase during the meet.
Ase warned mediators to arbitrate customary land issues without fear or favour and reject bribery offers.
“Land mediators and village court officials are volunteers paid quarterly allowances to serve the State and government officers on the ground. They need to be recognised and assisted,” Ase said.