NEWS

Close New Bank Account, Team Suggests To SODELPA

Findings of the investigation team will be looked at by a disciplinary committee. An investigation team has recommended that SODELPA close the new SODELPA Opposition bank account. It also recommended
24 Nov 2015 09:44
Close New Bank Account, Team Suggests To SODELPA

Findings of the investigation team will be looked at by a disciplinary committee.

An investigation team has recommended that SODELPA close the new SODELPA Opposition bank account.

It also recommended that account number 12258786 should be audited before it is closed and the balance should be transferred to the party’s main account.

Salaries of Opposition Office staff should now be paid from party headquarters, the team suggested.

The team headed by Anare Jale had conducted an inquiry into the controversial Gaunavinaka “confidential report”. The report, compiled after an audit of the Opposition Office, was critical of the governance of the Opposition Office.

In its findings, the investigation team found that a letter, dated January 8, 2015, about the $225,000 parliamentary grant, sent from Parliament’s secretariat, was addressed to Pio Tabaiwalu, SODELPA’s general secretary. But it was intercepted and taken to the Opposition Office. The new bank account in question was then set up and the $225,000 was deposited in it.

The transfer of $150,000 from Account 12258786  as a term deposit to Account 12267701, was unlawful, the team ruled. The team rated the action “very serious”.

It said the action by four senior party members, signatories of the account, to use the grant from Government to the party in breach of conditions of the grant, the party constitution and the political parties decree to pay the legal fees of a senior official. It said this was also “very serious.”

The team found that Opposition Leader Ro Teimumu Kepa did not breach the party policies on the appointment of Biman Prasad as chairperson of the Public Accounts and Richard Naidu as a member of the Constitutional Offices Commission. It had been claimed by the Gaunavinaka report that the caucus was not consulted.

It is recommended that the management board put in place as soon as possible operational  procedures that include policy on constitutional nominations.

No comment could be obtained from SODELPA and the Opposition Office last night.

The findings of the investigation team will be looked at by a disciplinary committee of Tupeni Baba and former diplomat Emitai Boladuadua.

The Gaunavinaka report has split the party.

Feedback:  nemani.delaibatiki@fijisun.com.fj

 



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