NATION

Overpaid Statements Revealed

Instead of the initial contract amount of $10.194million, T.F Jan Bulldozing Company was paid $12.426m as of July 2012, the High Court in Suva heard yesterday. This was revealed by
19 May 2015 09:07
Overpaid Statements Revealed
From left: Papua New Guinea Prime Minister James Marape, Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and the late Tongan Prime Minister, ‘Akilisi Pohiva, at the Pacific Islands Forum meeting in Tuvalu last month.

Instead of the initial contract amount of $10.194million, T.F Jan Bulldozing Company was paid $12.426m as of July 2012, the High Court in Suva heard yesterday.

This was revealed by the then Department of National Roads (DNR) director, Atunaisa Nayago, on Day 11 of the $3.1million road scam trial involving the director of T.F Jan Bulldozing company and four former civil servants.

Mr Nayago was taken through some interim payment certificates (IPC) by the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption lawyer Rashmi Aslam. Mr Nayago told the court that his signatures on those IPCs were forged together with the divisional engineer western, Munsami Naidu’s signature.

He was shown a statement dated October 16, 2010, which requested a total of $122,271.52, but according to the payment done $222,271.52 was paid, an overpayment of $100,000 was paid on May 4, 2012.

Another statement claiming $198,592 by T.F. Jan was shown, but was actually paid $318,592 which is $120,000 more than claimed.  Another claim of $287,836 by the bulldozing company was paid $367,836 which was $80,000 more according to IPCs shown to Mr Nayago.

Mr Nayago agreed that all these were signed by project accountant Iliesa Turagacati (second- accused) and that his forged signatures and that of Mr Naidu appeared to have been done with the same pen and ink.

Mr Nayago said none of the IPCs came through him and he did not give approval to any of those overpayments to be done to T.F Jan Bulldozing.

Mr Nayago was asked who was heading the senior accounts team and raised those cheques. He said it was Navitalai Tamanitoakula (third-accused).

T.F Jan Bulldozing director Firoz Jan Mohammed’s lawyer Ian Lloyd, QC, asked Mr Nayago if he was aware of any variation dated June 25, 2012 amounting to approximately $3m. Mr Nayago said he did not know. He was asked if any work worth a million dollar was possible to be done in 10 days since the variation approval came on December 21, 2011 to be completed by December 31, 2011. Mr Nayago said he could not say it was possible or not.

When queried by Turagacati’s lawyer Nancy Tikoisuva, Mr Nayago agreed that at times his signatures were different however, he said he could tell which ones were his signatures and which ones were not.

 

Charges

Businessman Firoz Jan Mohammed and former civil servants Iliesa Turagacati and Navitalai Tamanitoakula were charged with bribery, obtaining a financial advantage and abuse of office, while the other two Aisea Liwaiono have been charged with two counts of causing loss and Vijay Prasad charged with one count of causing loss.

Mohammed is also charged with a count of perverting the cause of justice by submitting false documents for investigation purpose.

It was alleged between February 27 and July 2012, Mohammed, offered payments amounting to $110,100 to Turagacati, who was an acting project accountant in DNR. For that same period Mohammed allegedly lodged false invoices and circumvented procedures to obtain an advantage of over $3 million.

Tamanitoakula, senior accounts officer of FRA, was alleged to have abused the authority of his office, did an arbitrary act in processing payments amounting to $2.468m to bulldozing company without following proper procedures.

The fourth and fifth accused Liwaiono and Prasad whilst being employed with FRA allegedly dishonestly caused a risk of loss to FRA by falsely verifying the statement of invoice dated December 31, 2010 amounting to $95,773.52 and supporting documents for bulldozing company allegedly knowing that there was a substantial risk of loss to FRA.

During the same time, it was alleged that Liwaiono dishonestly caused a risk of loss to FRA by falsely verifying the Statements of invoice respectively dated December 31, 2010, April 4, 2012 and April 16, 2012 amounting to a sum of $315, 417.60 and supporting documents of T.F.Jan Bulldozing Company Limited.

The five deny the charges.

 farisha.ahmed@fijisun.com.fj

 




Fiji Sun Instagram
Fiji Plus
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
error: