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  • Re: Vital Infor
    • bata
      Posted Jun 11, 2012 10:11 AM

      If I understood you right, I would take your question as; what are some factors that could reduce the K10 million DSIP funds. Bear with me if it looks like a lecture to you;

      To fully answer your question, three facts must be understood;

      1. money, in reality, does get reduced (as in a bottleneck) when it gets to actually producing work/change on the ground level. So the road from Waigani down to Yongomulg LLG looks a million kilometers with thousands of loopholes.

      2. proper procurement (professional purchasing) and competitive bidding for goods/services needed in the districts including the engagement of so called "consultants" are not followed well as required by Public Finance Management Act. One reason for this is that; the Act is new and acquittals/auditing is not properly/thoroughly done.

      3. all funds, DSIP & DSG, are earmarked (by the Act) for specific focus areas, although the 50% discretionary components remain the prerogative of the MP. The focus areas include; health, education, law&order, water supply/sanitation, women empowerment, etc.

      If MPs would like to access their development funds, including DSIP and DSG, National Planning Dept. would require several documentation in its submission including a detailed budget, decisions, minutes, scope of work, etc, as approved by the JDP&BPC. After the submission is made, it has to get through a stringent screening process; mostly checking against the PFMA and guidelines including successful completion of acquittals of previous financial year. After all these are completed, the prerogative now is with the National Planning Dept & Finance and Treasury to either approve and process the payment or to hold onto it because of incompetence and failure to meeting set guidelines. It may also be held/denied deliberately for two reasons; the officials expect their 10% side commission or the MP who is requesting is not part of the government that is in power, as I mentioned earlier.

      In extreme cases, Finance & Treasury does not have money when needed so the officials in Vulupindi have to shift/borrow funds from IRC, IPBC, etc, to pay dues. That means, every time including nights, finance has to move funds here and there to pay out. This sometimes drags due processes and causes fragmentation in other operations.

      There are other cases that could make the DSIP/DSG smaller and smaller;

      1. The MP would give huge sums of money to wantoks/friends for smaller work;

      2. The MP may divert more funds and a few goods and services to locations within the districts to which he got most votes and to places he/she plans to get votes in the next election;

      3. The MP would allow for "claim culture" among friends and wantok, to write claims/fake proposals to his electorate office to "thank" them for supporting him/her. Also, electoral offices (mostly wantoks of the MP) would recycle old project proposal/claims, changing names and dates, and get funds every time and could still justify/cover up;

      4. Some goods/services are not up to Responsive standards; meaning a good/service that is not needed as a priority area must not be given attention to. For instance; a huge K500 000 generator airlifted to Middle Ramu to power the station there had no back-up plan on whom or how to bring the fuel containers there because, there is no proper transport. The generator is rusting away idle. So it is a waste of Time and Resources! The good K500 000 could be well used in renovating 5 health centers. Responsiveness (meeting people's real needs) is a key characteristic of Good Governance according to UNDP;

      5. In theory, the MP should set out development plans (incorporating all Ward Development Plans into LLG Development Plan) and set priorities to achieve with the funds. However, in practice, the MP gets too busy with; setting up his business empire, playing national party politics to be in power or being caught with ministerial portfolios and coming home only to give funds on ad-hoc basis.

      6. The other reasons I mentioned earlier in the previous post about MPs fearing to access funds or not being well-versed and competent in accessing project funds, resulting in the full amount not being accessed.

      Sorry for the long lecture but email me should you require more infor.

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