Staff: Stay out of misuse claims

Normal, Sports

The National – Monday, July 4th 2011

 SEVERAL PNG Sports Foundation staff members have lashed out at the Public Employees Association president Michael Malabag for his involvement in the current saga regarding allegations of mismanagement of public funds by the chief executive officer Iamo Launa.

However, she passed the first hurdle last Thursday by winning the preliminary votes 4-3 by the PNG Sports Foundation Board members.

The allegations of misappropriation of public funds last year are before the Ombudsman Commission and other relevant organisations.

Launa’s victory was good news for some senior officers who had welcomed the board’s decision.

However, a staff member, who wanted to remain anonymous in fear of being intimidated or sacked from organisation, said Malabag should not divert his attention to claims of misappropriation of funds.

“He should be concerned about the livelihood of the public servants rather than the PNG Sports Foundation. He does not know what is happening in the corridors of the sports headquarters in Waigani.” 

The former chief executive officer John Kambuou should not be dragged into these heated exchanges because he had nothing to do with it, he said. 

Kambuou had retired until recently when he was given job by the Sports Minister Philemon Embel to get things moving because there was nothing constructive coming from the sports foundation, especially the preparations for next year’s PNG Games in Kokopo, East New Britain and the 2015 Pacific Games in Port Moresby.

The source said Kambuou was already out of the office when the allegations of the mismanagement and misappropriation of the sports funds surfaced.

The staff claimed that Launa had collaborated with Malabag on trying to divert the attention of misappropriation claims rather than addressing them.  

However, Malabag said in a statement last week that the appointment of Kambuou as first secretary to Embel was inappropriate.

He said the smooth flow of communication  between the CEO and  Minister’s left a lot to be desired. 

The staffer also said that since the appointment of Launa two years ago, she had yet to brief the minister on any sporting activities and other matters.  

“She has not visited the minister who is the political head of sport to brief him or even pay courtesy call,” the officer said.

Attempts to contact Kambuou to comment on Malabag’s statement were unsuccessful.