NATION

School Management To Document School Grants For Accountability

The Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC) encourages school managements in the country to document all transactions in relation to government grants received from the Ministry of Education. Every year,
16 Sep 2016 07:25

The Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC) encourages school managements in the country to document all transactions in relation to government grants received from the Ministry of Education.

Every year, the Government distributes in forms of Government grants to schools and universities for the purpose of developing the schools. The funds are expected to be utilised as intended but misuse and abuse do occur and defeats the real purpose of awarding school grants.

The Commission confirms that it has received complaints from the Ministry of Education and from communities during FICAC Awareness sessions especially from parents and teachers. These complaints are being investigated and can become complicated when recording methods don’t follow procedures.

Lessons learnt from the investigations are presented to the schools management and governing body’s to rectify the shortfalls so that proper accounting procedures are followed to alleviate the abuse of government school grants.

Some areas of concern involve poor documentation of records, signing of blank cheques in advance, falsifying acquittals, improper handing-over and many others.

Institutions are reminded that investigating the money trail will lead to unveiling the abuse if it has happened and therefore, school managements are encouraged to maintain a transparent and accountable system to avoid the abuse of the grants.

FICAC reminds the schools that strict legal actions will be taken including criminal investigations against those who abuse school funds.

FICAC’s Education and Awareness officers continues to visit schools to advocate on the risks associated with school grants and provide preventative recommendations for the proper utilisation of these grants.   Minister for Education Mahendra Reddy had told the Fiji Sun that some schools had been referred to FICAC for investigations for alleged abuse of funds.

 



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