TIPNG backs call for K4bil budget investigation

National, Normal

The National – Tuesday, February 15, 2011

TRANSPERANCY International PNG (TIPNG) has supported the call by Minister for Finance and Treasury Peter O’Neill for a full audit to be conducted on the accounts of the K4 billion Development Budget expended in the 2010 financial year.
TIPNG said in press statement yesterday that the revelations of the past week had been illuminating, adding that images of ministers and a departmental heads gathered in a Port Moresby suburban club to decide on the distribution of more than K100 million must cause great concern.
“Suggestions that there have been decisions to drop neatly rounded sums of money into district treasury accounts and a private company account must leave the community worried and suspicious. The public can only watch with great concern when told that a neat K6 million went to Sohe district in Northern (exactly K3 million for Kokoda High School and K3 million for the Kokoda road).
“How can the costings be exactly K3 million in each case?” TIPNG said.
They further questioned the basis which decisions were made to allocate K3 million for bridges in Ningerum (Western) and Rai Coast (Madang) and asked if there were plans which showed that K3 million was needed in each case.
“And how is it possible that K10.9 million would be transferred to a private company? To add even more doubt to this matter, how is it possible that the allocation to provincial sectoral improvement programmes can be doubled in 14 cases.
“Which provinces received the K2 million?
“TIPNG and the public looks forward to hearing from each governor of how much, if anything, they received in this avalanche of funding,” the statement said.
The anti-graft body also questioned why the decisions were made outside of the Public Finance Management Act and why were not the tender processes under the Central Supply and Tenders Board followed.