The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance and Treasury, McKinnie Dentana has clarified the misleading statement made by TSI alleging that public officers have been qualified for the ESP payment.
The article, which was based on leaked information, is misleading and can amount to defamation of character to those that have appeared in the list.
“I must confirm that the public officers did not qualify for ESP,” Mr Dentana said today.
All officials including the Director of Economic Reform Unit (ERU) that appeared in the list were Imprest holders and were not the recipient of the ESP funding or project.
The same is also for public officers that were under the Investment Division and Price Control under the Ministry of Commerce.
The Permanent Secretary clarified that all officers under the Ministry as well as those in the Ministry of Commerce are actually being entrusted to facilitate the payments for youths that were hired on casual basis to monitor the Price Control Regulation. It was also confirmed that the youth activities also involves monitoring of prices and companies in certain provinces.
“As a holder of Imprest, these public officers have a responsibility to fully retire the Imprest received as any outstanding amount not accounted for will be deducted from their salary. I wish to also confirm that almost all these officers have already retired the Imprest and few will retire the Imprest after they pay the youths”.
“I can also confirm that some of the officers have returned the outstanding money that were not utilized to Treasury as a process of Imprest retirement,” Dentana said.
The Permanent Secretary also confirmed that the engagement of youths would continue until December 2020.
“Had the TSI contacted my office, they should not be publishing the articles and the names of individuals receiving Imprest as none of the public officers in the list receives ESP project payment as claimed by TSI”.
“As a transparency organisation, I trust TSI can do better than this rather than inciting public distrust with information that is misleading for public consumption,” he added. The Permanent Secretary finally commented that no once on his or right mind to be self-servicing as assumed by the TSI, let alone as public officers. Only people without the right mind and with other motives will be irresponsible to make such assumption and feeding the public with wrong information and conclusion. This is always the case with the TSI and this raises its integrity, according to the Permanent Secretary.
Press Release from Government Communication Unit