NEWS

CEO Defends FRA From Criticisms

The Fiji Roads Authority chief executive officer, John Hutchinson has defended the FRA from criticisms. It’s the first time he has publicly spoken out since his appointment recently. He especially
11 Aug 2016 09:13
CEO Defends FRA From   Criticisms
Fiji Road Authority Chief Executive officer, John Hutchinson. Photo: RONALD KUMAR.

The Fiji Roads Authority chief executive officer, John Hutchinson has defended the FRA from criticisms.

It’s the first time he has publicly spoken out since his appointment recently.

He especially referred to an attack from Opposition MP, Biman Prasad, on the budget allocated to the FRA for the new financial year.

FRA was allocated $527.2 million.

Out of the total budget allocation, $510.6 million were for capital works and the other $16.6 million was for operating expenditure.

Mr Prasad said had said that there had been no attempt to cut non-priority expenditure such as FRA.

Mr Prasad said there had been no proper audits, no efficiency assessment and no assessment for value of money.

Mr Hutchinson said he didn’t want an argument with the MP but stated that they were a statutory authority.

“The Shadow Minister may be the next Minister, I don’t know so I really don’t want to comment or an argument of the Shadow’s Minister for Finance statement and he is entitled to his opinion,” he said.

Mr Hutchinson said at the end of the day the authority was judged by its performance.

“We will be the first to admit that there have been some issues around our service delivery but I would hold up the FRA in comparison to Department of National Roads (DNR) and Public Works Department (PWD), the quota of money that has been allocated to FRA is far greater than what is allocated to DNR or PWD,” he said.

Mr Hutchinson said that was in recognition by Government that had significant investment on infrastructure.

“We have a maintenance backlog that has to be addressed,” he said.

“I don’t know how the Shadow Minister can indicate that the money allocated to FRA is a waste so how does he propose to address the maintenance backlog in any other way, you have to spend money? he said.

Mr Hutchinson said the challenge ahead of him was to ensure that the money given to authority was being spent in the best possible manner ‘so I get the maximum value for that’.

“Now the Shadow Minister wants to question the value that FRA has achieved in the past, he is more entitled to do so.

“Yes there are mistakes made and we will admit that , every organisation makes mistake and the ability for the organisation to learn from those mistakes is very critical,” he said.

Mr Hutchinson said people should be made aware that the authority was established in 2012 and became operational in 2013, so it had only been three years.

 

Edited by Nemani Delaibatiki

Feedback:  arieta.vakasukawaqa@fijisun.com.fj


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.




Five Squares Platinum Deals


Tower Insurance
Total
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper