5 Dec 2005

Solomon Islands auditor general calls for new accounting check on constituency fund

4:18 pm on 5 December 2005

The Solomon Islands auditor General says too much money is being disbursed through the constituency development fund for it to remain unaccounted for.

Augustine Fatai has raised concern about the lack of accountability in the use of the fund, and says a new system is needed to ensure these funds are used for the purposes intended.

Mr Fatai says the old system, which required the auditor to check and officially account for the funds, was thrown out in 2000.

He says the fund amounts to 57,000 US dollars a year per MP, or around 228,000 US dollars a parliamentary term.

"That is a lot of money - it has to be looked into very carefully because one thing that is very much notable is that after so many years and after so much money being spent under this programme, no significant development has taken place in the rural Solomon Islands. Therefore one can assume that most of these funds have not been used properly."

Augustine Fatai says they have earmarked the fund for audit next year.