PAC blames finance ministry for ‘useless’ fiscal management

Inside the National Parliament. Photo: National Parliament of Solomon Islands

The Public Accounts Committee said the Ministry of Finance and Treasury, which is responsible for the 2018 budget formulation, must accept partial blame for mismanaging the country’s fiscal situation over the past three years.

According to the commitee, the current economic plunge resulted from the ministry’s negligence in fiscal management.

Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Finance and Treasury Harry Kuma told the Public Accounts Committee yesterday that a lot of reprioritisation and redirection has taken place in the past two weeks to ensure the Government agrees on this year’s deliverable priorities.

But Member of Parliament for Aoke/Langalanga Matthew Wale said he is hearing the same people say the same nice things that were said about last year’s budget.

“We are where we are because of consistently useless management of the Government’s fiscal situation over the last three years,” he said. “We’ve absolutely squandered resources, and now you say must refocus and reprioritise…”

Mr Wale said the PAC has offered a number of revenue measures in recent years, which the ministry failed to activate.

He said the Expansionary Fiscal Policy of the Government should have mechanisms in place to gauge its impact on the wider economy, the extent of the impact and whether it is sustainable.

By Leni Dalvaera

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