Sir Michael presents last budget to Treasury

Sir Michael Somare who will retire from politics as the East Sepik Governor gave his last provincial budget to Treasury Minister Patrick Pruaitch on Wednesday in Port Moresby.

Sir Michael who is Papua New Guinea’s first Prime Minister and longest serving politician in the Commonwealth will pull the curtain down on his colourful political carrier in this March Parliament sitting.   

The East Sepik Provincial 2017 Budget is valued at K261 million.

Sir Michael said the budget was cut short by K7 million following national government not fully funding the Provincial Support Improvement Program (PSIP) component.    

He added that provincial raised K13 million from its internal revenue, which K7 million was retained by the provincial government.

The retiring East Sepik Governor raised the issue of K50 million funding to Yangoru- Saussia District to develop the Sepik Economic Zone which is unaccounted for.      

“We were not happy with the funding, extra K50 million given to Yangoru- Saussia MP (Richard Maru) is not in the budget, you will blame ESP provincial government but one of your senior ministers did not show us the component of the money he got.  

“We want to know where the K50 million is,” Sir Michael questioned.  

Treasury Minister Pruaitch in response said, “We will go through the budget and give approval for the provincial team to start spending this year.

He said the Treasury Department will request the local MP to present the acquittals of the K50 million funding.  

“I noted your concern for the funding in the 2013 National Budget “It’s a subject of expenditure requirement where a report must be presented to Treasury because it is money from the (national) budget,” Pruaitch said.    

“We need expenditure report and from treasury we will request for a report to compiled and presented.”

Pruaitch said all outstanding PSIP funds will be paid in the first quarter of this year and the shortfall in the allocation last was because of shortfall in the national government revenues in 2016.


Charles Yapumi