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North Help Scheme Under Scrutiny

The Northern Development Programme (NDP) has come a long way since its inception in 2007 as a result of a Cabinet decision. Part of the process has also included improved
10 Mar 2015 10:07
North Help Scheme Under Scrutiny

The Northern Development Programme (NDP) has come a long way since its inception in 2007 as a result of a Cabinet decision.

Part of the process has also included improved compliance with auditing and governance procedures, the Public Accounts Committee was assured yesterday.

Ravi Chand, chief executive officer of the National Centre for Small and Micro Enterprise Development (NCSMED), said since 2008 they had produced acquittals and reports on a monthly basis to account for taxpayers money that was invested in the programme.

Mr Chand said the programme had invested in 1798 projects since 2008, 80 per cent of which were still in business.

However, PAC chairman Biman Prasad insisted an updated evaluation report of the projects and their success and viability was needed.

According to Mr Chand, the programme has received $6.1 million in grants since its inception.

Other issues discussed at the PAC meeting yesterday that dealt with the 2009 Auditor-General’s Report were;

 

Surcharges

The PAC was concerned about the increasing numbers of vehicle accidents and the laxity in surcharging those responsible for the accidents. The PAC wants the Ministry of Finance to provide an update of the dollar value of vehicle accidents from 2009-2014.

 

Company salaries

The salaries of senior officers in Government commercial companies have also come under the spotlight. The PAC has asked the Ministry of Finance to provide details about the revision of salaries in these companies.

PAC chairman Biman Prasad said once this report was received, the committee would be able to make informed recommendations, in the absence of the Higher Salaries Commission, that hasn’t met for the last few years.

Government Printery

The Ministry of Finance representatives pointed out some of the recurring issues at the printers included reprinted jobs because of poor editing. Both Government Whip Semi Koroilavesau and Mr Prasad said the standard of reporting needed to improve as well to reflect the measures taken to address recurring issues in the Auditor-General’s reports.

The Committee meets again today.

Feedback: josuat@fijisun.com.fj

 




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