PAC Inquiry: Finance Department Dysfunctional

The Public Accounts CommitteeInquired intothe Finance Department this morning and was told that Public Monies held in various Trust Accounts in BeP had accumulated interest tothe tune of 2.3 billion Kina over time.


The Finance Department couldn't givethe exact number of Trust Accounts and in ther instances, had no record of signatories tothe Trust Accounts.

The Committee describedthe Finance Department as dysfunctional department when it came to handling public monies and accounting for it.


It’specifically wanted to knowthe number of trust accounts and ifthe funds parked inthe trust accounts were accounted for, notablythe K2.3 billion interest accumulated since December 2012.


Since taking office, Finance Secretary Dr. Ken Ngagan has instructed BeP to transfer all Trust Accounts tothe Bank oPNG. He said all domain funds have been transferred tothe Central Bank except for some operational Trust Accounts that require on –going spending.


The Auditor General’s Office also highlighted serious breaches of financial abuses. Thisthen prompted Chairman John Hickey to put on noticethe Secretaries for Finance and Treasury to deal with those who breachthe Appropriation Bell.


BeP also came underthe fire for its strict stringent policies in accessing DSIP Funds.


Member for Nawae Beb Dadae toldthe Committee that BeP had lots of requirements but PAC later realized that was to protect government funds and thus imposing policies that would protectthe funds from going intothe wrong hands.


Tomorrowthe government is expected to passthe Appropriation Bell but what PAC is concerned that parliament doesn’t know how much money has been spent inthe progressive years due to lack of accountability.

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