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Catholic Church calls on Marape Government Go Explain COVID - 19 Funds

The Papua New Guinea National Government through the Department of Health has been called on to explain how COVID-19 expenses for use of sporting facilities in the nation's capital have been outstanding since 2020, despite millions of kinas allocated towards the containment exercise.

A K6. 2 million is owed to the PNG Sports Foundation for the use of its Rita Flynn facility for isolation purposes and other related costs for its other facilities - at the height of the pandemic. 

Paul. H Photo; PNG Bulletin

This has resulted in the closure of these facilities and locking up of other vital medical equipment by the Foundation and the announcement of the cessation of COVID-19 operations in the city by the NCD Provincial Health Authority - which has no financial powers to pay the outstanding.

Deputy Controller Dr. Daoni Esorom has revealed between K12-13 million has accumulated in the Health Improvement program fund trust account for the PHAs COVID-19 expenses and other health and administrative activities since 2020:

Catholic Professionals Society President Paul Harricknen issued this call today (Wednesday 22nd June 2022), saying the Society applied to challenge the constitutionality of the Pandemic Act 2020 alongside Opposition Leader Belden Namah because it excluded the application of the Public Finance Management Acts on COVID funds among others.

''Funds in the million which were brought in for the purpose of COVID-19. Those funds were kept in the Trust Account and the government under the Pandemic Act 2020 has excluded the application of the Public Management Act, they oversight scrutiny by the Public Accounts, they oversight the scrutiny by the Auditor, so they were kept in the Trust Accounts and we believe those monies were not accounted for and the audit was not done,'' said Harricknen.

NBC / PNG Today

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