Lack of action by Prime Minister Sato Kilman
I must admit, I am very encouraged by the recent discussions in the Facebook on some key challenging issues Vanuatu people have to live with, and am very interested in the whistle blowers webpage. The recent one was on the above mentioned title, “Lack of Action by Prime Minister.......”!
Indeed, the statement by Prime Minister Kilman that: “There will be a lot of investigations into the work of numerous departments. The corrupt and fraudulent activities happening in government, whether at the political level or civil servant level must end”, was repeated several time on different occasions including his New Year message, his opening of the PPP Shepherds Congress, prior to Niscol’s investigation etc.
That statement was very, very heavy in words, but without any substance. Let me give you some reasons why they were just words without substance.
He, the PM, was only picking on allegations against opposition members. E.g in Niscol’s case, he only picked on Kalvau Moli’s term as CEO but not Antoine Pikioune and Kavcor Wass’ term of office. Similar allegations made against Niscol were also rifled at the Ifira Stevedoring but no investigation took place there. Members have made several complaints about a lack of audit report but no action was taken!
Then there’s the VCMB case of 2008 involving Vt108 million copra subsidy. When S Kilman was Trade Minister in 2010, he initiated an investigation into unaccounted funds from the VCMB allocation of 2008. This was never completed because firstly, he refused to lodge an official complaint to enable police investigation, and secondly he cannot allocate funds to enable a comprehensive police investigation to materialize. I believe some members of NUP and PPP could be implicated in the missing funds if it did go ahead. Now the case is closed in his book.
Earlier this year, he announced the suspension of VCMB board under the chairmanship of Sisae who was, and still is, the PPP Malekula Congress chairman. He told the people of Vanuatu through Radio Vanuatu, that the board was suspended over alleged corruption because members were demanding and getting commissions from Copra Buyers, and that the commissions were paid directly into their private accounts. He said an investigation will be launched, but to-date, nothing has happened because if it did, his own PPP members would be implicated. The case is closed in his book.
PM Kilman has failed to take any real action in response to the findings of the Auditor General’s Investigation into the Vanuatu Broadcasting & Television Corporation (VBTC) – which is under his portfolio. The Investigation Report was submitted to him almost a year ago in June 2011. Despite his promises to the public to tackle corruption, Prime Minister Kilman is instead pushing VBTC to increase television coverage to Malekula, his parliamentary constituency, before this year’s general elections. Presumably, this fits in with his campaign strategy for re-election into parliament. It is unfortunate that the PM has allowed his own self-interest to take priority at VBTC rather than demonstrate any real commitment to the firm words he uttered in his 2012 New Year Message. (Whistle blower website)
His infrastructure minister was earlier found to have infiltrated the legal system of tender to avoid processing bids through the tender board as stipulated by the Tenders Act. He did so by separating a complete tender into smaller contracts and awarding these contracts to his political friends so they can all benefit from its profit. Prime Minister did not ask for an investigation and prosecution. Now the case is closed.
When Sato Kilman was deputy Prime Minister, under the Natapei Government, he and other Ministers and MPs were accusing Natapei of ‘being too weak to take action against ministers whom, in their opinion, should be sacked over some unjust activity”. Now he is doing the same thing.
This same minister for infrastructure was found guilty of criminal behavior in the assault of Daily Post publisher. He was not sacked and the case is closed on PM’s book.
The payment of the Vt17 million vatu cheques to Snoopys, (a company that no longer exists, and whose materials were not delivered as claimed) that landed two Cabinet Ministers Pipite and Moana at the brink of dismissal. It was also in breach of the Supreme Court decision on Civil Case No 209. We were advised that the payment was actually initiated by the man on the top, whom eventually disassociate himself from the issue only after sensing that the saga will soon be on the spotlight. This is a very serious corrupt practice but no further action was taken and the case is now closed.
The sale of public land adjacent to the Ministry and Department of Infrastructure and Public Utilities by the Minister of Lands was another example. The sale did not go through any tender and contravenes the decision of the Council of Minister – not to sell any more public land. No investigation into the sale was encouraged and the case is now closed on PM Kilman’s book.
And sadly, many people have lodged official complaints and raised concerns for being defrauded by their fellow nationals or our nationals defrauding other foreign nations. Many innocent or poor people have lost between Vt1, 000 to as high as hundreds of thousands of vatu on diamond scams and other forms of scams. Sadly, the Prime Minister should be at the forefront urging an investigation but instead decided to recruit the very organizers - one being the boss of the Public Service, one managing the affairs of the municipal council and one was arrested and jailed in Brisbane. The victims are still victims and what was meant to be their savings are now lost forever.... But as far as the PM is concerned, his book is closed.
Last but not the least, the proposed jewellery shop next to ANZ bank building in front everyone’s nose, was closed more than a year because of an alleged illegal contract signed with a New Zealand national. This case is also closed on PM’s book.
These are just some of the issues I want to raise to support my point.
Thank you tumas,