FIJI NEWS

FICAC probes road abuse

By Maika Bolatiki The abuse by former Department of Roads (DNR) senior officials has been referred to the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC). The chairman of the board of
07 Jan 2013 07:23

By Maika Bolatiki

The abuse by former Department of Roads (DNR) senior officials has been referred to the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC).
The chairman of the board of the Fiji Roads Authority (FRA), Lieutenant-Colonel Pio Tikoduadua confirmed this and said some senior officers were involved and are now on suspension.
As part of Government’s reform the Department of National Roads has become the Fiji Roads Authority.
Lieutenant-Colonel Tikoduadua said first, they needed to reform the management of our roads and end the incompetence, corruption and basic lack of road-building skills.
He said the work of the roads authority had been affected by the corrupt practices of the past.
The board’s chairman said the authority was still receiving payment receipts for road works completed two years ago.
“They should have been paid already. Where has the money gone to?”
The corrupt practices by these roads officials have led to the neglect of the servicing of Fiji roads.
As the road authority begins work Lieutenant- Colonel Tikoduadua said it needed a clean slate. “We needed to build the capacity of FRA to plan, build, and maintain good roads for the nation. And so we are setting aside $422 million in this budget for roads and bridges, an increase of $182 million.”
He said FICAC had started its investigation and charges are yet to be laid.
The people responsible he said would have to answer for their dirty actions.
Lieutenant-Colonel Tikoduadua said foreign companies had taken over road constructions all over the country.
According to Lieutenant-Colonel Tikoduadua these companies will bring new technologies and methods, and will provide long-term solutions, not temporary fixes. They will give us better results and a better return on our investment.
Two companies will work in the Central and Eastern Divisions, one in the West and one in the North. They will not only maintain and rebuild our roads; they will restore our capacity to build roads ourselves.



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