‘GHOST’ WORKERS HAUNT PNG PAYROLL

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‘GHOST’ WORKERS HAUNT PNG PAYROLL

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, Aug. 15) - Police have been ordered to weed out "ghost" names on the Southern Highlands Provincial payroll as part of the State of Emergency operations in the province.

They have also been asked to arrest and prosecute people who have received unbudgeted money from the provincial government.

Other directives from the National Government include: Removing people living illegally in State houses, and; remove vehicles from people unlawfully using them. The security forces are to enforce the directives alongside government agencies who will look into the administrative operations of the province.

Deputy Police Commissioner and State of Emergency controller Gari Baki said yesterday he had briefed about 800 officers - policemen, soldiers and prison officers - who have been deployed to the province.

"There are specific government directives that need to be implemented. Basically, to deal with people on (the) payroll, people living in government houses in Mendi Town, and to recover government vehicles," Baki said. "(We are) also to arrest people taking money from government that is not budgeted for, and policing."

He also mentioned an amnesty but that is yet to be gazetted.

He said the security operation in the trouble-torn province was being addressed in two ways.

"One is on intelligence on the overall situation in the Southern Highlands, and the other is operational orders pertaining to security personnel. Our intelligence have given us indications on targeted areas to look out for," Baki said. "The concept of the police operation is security intervention… making sure security for government property is maintained, and prosecution of cases with the view to weakening and ending the culture of mal-administration (ghost names)," he said.

August 16, 2006

Papua New Guinea Post-Courier: www.postcourier.com.pg/

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