SHP groups query K2m given by PM

Highlands, Normal

The National, Wednesday 25th January 2012

THE people of Southern Highlands want to know where a K2 million given by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill to the provincial co-operative societies is.
O’Neill had released the funds after noticing the societies needed help during his first visit to the province last year.
It is understood that the K2 million was paid into the Nipa-Kutubu district account instead of the provincial government’s.
A spokesman said the people wanted a thorough investigation carried out on the funds.
On Monday, Nipa-Kutubu administrator Robin Pip confirmed that the funds were paid to the district account, adding that acting Finance secretary Steven Gibson had instructed that the money be deposited there.
Gibson wanted it paid to the district before it was distributed to the cooperative societies.
Provincial administrator William Powi was said to have later paid out the money to cooperative societies based on a list submitted to him.
However, the societies deny getting any money.
Powi could not be reached for comments.