Image: PPAP coffee manager Mr Potaisa Hombunaka
Lead partners in the Coffee Industry Corporation’s Productive Partnerships in Agriculture Project (CIC-PPAP) have been warned not to misuse funds meant to service coffee growers.
CIC-PPAP Project Manager Potaisa Hombunaka urged them to spend within the agreed budget, under an agreement they signed.
“…I urge you to use the funds only on activities agreed in the budget…,” He said when addressing 12 lead partners and their project coordinators during a one-day meeting in Goroka on Wednesday (July 11).
“The success of this project is based on good governance; hence the government is adopting the PPAP modality for fresh produce development project.”
The purpose of the meeting was to enable partnerships to discuss implementing issues and optimize achievements towards June 2019 when the project ends.
The CIC-PPAP project management unit issues funds to lead partners in tranches, to pay for goods, services and operational costs incurred in the implementation of coffee rehabilitation with growers. Mr Hombunaka said the objective is to produce quality coffee and up skill coffee growers, and more so with the National Cupping Competition to be held in Port Moresby during the APEC Summit. He said “only coffees scoring above 85% but more so around 90% will be allowed to attend.
“I want quality and not quantity participation.” He told lead partners.
“It’s coffee season now so training should be focused on quality and soon after that will be rehabilitation…
“We want to see physical improvements of all coffee gardens under the project.”
According to the Project Manager, Mr Hombunaka, in spite of training provided to lead partners on stringent procurement and financial guidelines; there have been many “ineligible expenses” that lead partners now have to pay in full. He said: “This is also contributing to delayed project implementation.
“If in doubt always seek clarifications from respective consultants at PPAP office. Do not spend first…” Mr Hombunaka advised lead partners.
Chairman of Industry Coordination Committee (ICC) or PPAP Coffee Board Ian Mopafi, reiterated the call for all partnerships to comply with governance and use funds appropriately.
“This is not another NADP (National Agriculture Development Project) fund where millions have been misappropriated by paper farmers.
“…we will come after you if you do not comply with the processes and use funds outside of budgeted activities.” He warned
Mr Mopafi also reminded lead partners to ensure the funding per partnership must translate to changes on coffee trees and subsequent impact on target beneficiaries or growers.
The lead partners who attended were from the Eastern zone including;
- Tribal Aromas;
- CDA Gumini (Simbu);
- RCF Goroka;
- Hatavile Coffee Ltd;
- CDA Goroka;
- AAAK Coffee Cooperative under PNG Coffee Exports;
- Outspan PNG;
- Obura Wonenara Coffee Co-operative Society Ltd;
- Coffee Connections Ltd (Eastern Highlands);
- New Britain Resource Development Ltd (East New Britain);
- Wia Trade Enterprise Ltd and Niugini Coffee;
- and Tea and Spices Ltd (Morobe).
Also in attendance were heads of Provincial Agriculture Divisions and Coffee Industry Corporation (CIC) extension officers, helping with implementation in respective provinces.
The meeting is an ongoing activity to discuss challenges and remedies towards achieving maximum results in the final year of the agreement.
Project sites like Simbai and Kovon LLG in Middle Ramu, Crater Mountain in Lufa District and Erap in Morobe are very remote, and delivery is a challenge.
A similar meeting was conducted recently for eight partnerships in Western zone (upper highlands provinces) including Madang (Simbai and Kovon LLG) and East Sepik.
Source: Press Release