TI PNG notes with concern the recently reported complaint referred to the Ombudsman Commission by community leaders from the Western Province concerning the purchase of the Workers Mutual Insurance (WMI) Building in Gordons on section 63, Allotment 24 Gabaka Street by Mineral Resources Ok Tedi No 2 Limited (MROT).
According to the report the value of the building was over K9 million inclusive of furniture and fittings and the Mineral Resource Ok Tedi No 2 fund paid K17 million for it. Once again we have suggestions that individuals responsible for safeguarding and managing our people’s money have failed.
TI (PNG) is aware of complaints that the purchase of the property is in violation of MROT’s constitution. The complaints also claim the purchase was against the recommendation of MROT and that the price was much greater than both the management’s recommendation and a professional valuation commissioned by the management of MROT in December 2007.
The people of PNG have been denied their rights far too often by people who make poor or even corrupt decisions in purchasing property. TI PNG is very well aware of the long outstanding NPF cases and the manner in which individuals apparently conspired in dishonesty. If there is truth in the complaints about the WMI Building purchase it would seem that the people of Western Province may be about to suffer a huge loss.
It is essential that respected provincial leaders be above suspicion and also essential that the people of provinces not be denied justice when their funds are managed by leaders. TI PNG encourages the Ombudsman Commission to investigate this matter as vigorously and expeditiously as possible.
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