Opposition MPs yet to get funds, says Masiu

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By Clifford Faiparik
DEPUTY Opposition Leader Timothy Masiu, pictured, has disputed a statement by Finance Secretary Dr Ken Ngangan that all services improvement programme funds for last year had been paid to the 89 district treasuries.
The South Bougainville MP said many Opposition MPs were yet to receive the full K10 million which was supposed to be allocated to each district.
Ngangan had told The National on Monday that all the districts had received their K10 million services improvement programme funds.
The final instalment of K1.9 million was released on Tuesday, he said.
But Masiu said South Bougainville had so far only received K6.1 million – as was the case with other districts.
He accused the Government of making misleading statements “while ordinary Papua New Guineans, especially in rural areas, are not receiving basic government services”.
“Ngangan as the department head of Finance has been saying MPs will receive their funds, when there is cash in the system,” Masiu said.
“Now, Ngangan suddenly announces that all funds had been paid.”
Masiu said if indeed the full K10 million had been paid to all districts, then the funds would have gone missing “between Waigani and the districts”.
He said Opposition MPs suspected that some of the funds could be “withheld at Manasupe House”.
Masiu said it was sad that government grants earmarked for the people in the districts last year had not reached them.

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