By Staff Reporter : PNG Today
Commentary by PETER S. KINJAP
PNG politicians have a tendency to dish out cash from the PSIP/DSIP to civil society organizations, community based associations, schools, aid posts and churches. These "political gifts" are legally binded and protected from misuse by Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) so long as they are public money from the public purse.
Regardless of how much money it is, there is a law in place to cover and protect how and where this public money is spend. Knowingly or without, since the money becomes disposabal at their discretion, politicians turned to find any means and ways to direct it to their personal benefit or to gain voter support in elections. One of the avenues many politicians sending out money is through the civil society organizations, community based associations, schools, aid posts and churches. Again politicians send the money for two reasons: 1) for their personal interest and benefits, 2) to gain voter support popularity in the elections.
This is happening throughout the country in the districts and provinces. This is corruption finding its way to be accepted by people and compromise with it. This must be stopped. Many people already accepting it as normal when it is illegal.
The PFMA says every public money follows the government institutionalised procedures in acquittal. So when it is donated to entities other than government, it is already illegal and breaching of PFMA.
My point is that we are going towards election time now and....."politicians are looking for avenues to secure support and votes through organized community groups such as associations.....so my argument was that they should not be seen along with associations, churches or schools dishing out cash."
Those hard working community based organizations must not fall prey to the cunning ideas of the politicians by accepting cash dish out in the name of service delivery.
I have two examples of such that it went wrong:
1) Goverment funding to Kerevat National High school in millions went missing and investigation pending.
2) Goverment funding to Flyer River Foundation...an association funded by Western Governor Arti Wabiro who is now serving 10 years in Bomana cell.
By this I am not against any good work by community based associations, civil society organizations, churches, schools and others. I am supporting the work of associations and in particular calling on them to distance themselves from politicians.
Local MP or the Governor have the government institutions to dish out money for service delivery and not through associations, churches or schools. By PFMA, such is illegal and corrupt practice.
It simply indicates that those politicians does not have trust in the government system they have been voted to represent or they do not have a vision to build up the capacity of the government institutions and channel services through the established government system.
We cannot sit back, watch and allow such politicians to continue temper the systems and confuse voters.
We need to stand up and fight for our rights!
Corruption involves two people or more. If you say no to support or compromise with corruption, you are already acting positively on the way to stop the entire network of corruption.
Say no to corruption and vote wisely this election.