Members still have duty to perform

All current sitting members of Parliament still have the duty to represent their people during the election period.

Ombudsman Richard Pagen said leaders will still control service delivery until after the return of writs which is on July 24.

He said the issue of writs yesterday does not mean that MPs lost their powers.

He made these comments in Port Moresby when issuing a direction against the use of DSIP funds during the election, after the Ombudsman Commission, Department of Finance and Department of Rural Development and Implementation put a conditional freeze on DSIP and PSIP till 30 September.

The Central Bank Governor, Commercial Banks, all District development Authorities, Provincial and District Administrators and respective Joint Provincial Planning and Budget Priorities Committee have been made aware of the direction.

Pagen made a request for all members to return funds meant for development to the development accounts, and not remain in operational accounts.

The Finance Department is monitoring the movement of funds during this time and all development proposals will go through the committee set up by the three to vetting before OC signs off on requests.

Pagen said the conditional Freeze of provincial and district service improvement fund is a tool to protect the leaders from instances of bribery and not to hinder development.

Chief Ombudsman, Michael Dick said while there may be attempts to evade the direction by moving development funds to other operating accounts not covered in the direction, it is an offense under the Public Finance Management Act and a breach to the direction.



Sally Pokiton