Opposition MPs cry foul

National, Normal

The National, Thursday July 4th, 2013


Seven Opposition MPs cannot implement projects in their districts as their funds have been held back by the Government, the Opposition claimed.

Only four of the seven MPs have received their district service improvement funds and the provincial service improvement funds for this year although seven months hadlapsed, the Opposition said.

The four MPs were said to have received only K1 million each while another two MPs have yet to received any money at all for their districts.

The Opposition said its leader and Vanimo Green MP Belden Namah was yet to receive any funds for this year while Madang Governor Jim Kas has not received his funds after a cheque deposited into his district treasury was dishonored.

Kundiawa-Gembogl MP Tobias Kulang confirmed that he has recieved only K1 million, and was using funds from last year to fund projects in his electorate.

The office of the Deputy Opposition Leader and Bulolo MP Sam Basil has also confirmed receiving only K1 million of his K10 million DSIP fund.

The Opposition is concerned that its MPs were not able to fund approved projects in their districts  because the Government was witholding their funds.

It claimed the Government was instead using the funds to lure Opposition MPs to the government bench to increase its numbers and remain in power.

Attempts to get comments from Finance Minister James Marape were not successful.

MPs in the Opposition are Namah, Basil, Rabaul MP Dr Allan Marat, Kas, Kulang, Huon Gulf’s Ross Seymour and North Bougainville’s Lauta Atoi.