24 Jun 2009

PNG Finance Dept inquiry needs timeframe, says Transparency Int'l

8:21 pm on 24 June 2009

The anti-corruption organisation, Transparency International in Papua New Guinea, says a major inquiry into the country's finance ministry needs a timeframe.

This month the deadline was due to lapse for the commission of inquiry, which is find out whether the finance department made fraudulent payments between 2000 and 2006.

During that time it paid out more than 1.3 billion US dollars for 2,677 individual claims.

While there is speculation the commissioner may ask for an extension, Transparency's Peter Aitsi says the public has lost confidence in the finance department, which needs to be restored.

He says he has full confidence in the inquiry, but urges transparency.

"There needs to be a timeline. But any review should be done in view of the work undertaken so far. Perhaps working towards a plan of the work that's required to be done to conclude the inquiry. Any decision to either disband it or to further support it needs to be done with a full understanding of the work that's required to conclude the inquiry."

Peter Aitsi