Papua New Guinea Opposition Describes 2017 Budget As 'Fraudulent'

Poor projections, estimations make it difficult for government to fund priorities: Deputy leader

By Frankiy Kapin 

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, Jan. 26, 2017) – Papua New Guinea’s 2017 national budget has been described as fraudulent.

Deputy Opposition leader and Pangu Party leader Sam Basil said last weekend on the premise of a summary of the 2017 budget by a former PNG Treasury expert Paul Flanagan.

Mr Basil says the current government has generated unpredictable patterns in the economy that gives the world an impression that its business as usual for PNG each day.

He said economically as a country, PNG took a serious tumble last year as the government took major risks that gambled away what should have been the lucrative inheritance of future generations of Papua New Guinea.

"The O’Neill Government will continue to have difficulties paying for its own priorities," Mr Basil predicted.

He said PNG now faces a major problem with the entire districts and provincial development plans given the government’s annual money plan is a fraudulent theory of poor projections and estimations. Referring to the budget summary by Australian Paul Flanagan, Mr Basil reiterated that Flanagan’s report states that the budget was a missed opportunity for restoring credibility in the government’s economic management.

He said the report goes on to paint the government’s ambitious yet desperate policy choices and reflect the government’s out of control institutional processes that are designed to embed transparency and provide protection against the abuse of funds from the public purse.

Mr Basil said to economically reform PNG, a budget repair and fiscal discipline is the only way to prioritise health, education, transport, infrastructure and law and justice again.

"We want to share the benefits of this country’s gain with the people whose assets are mortgaged to negotiate commercial loan deals requiring higher level of political will," Mr Basil said.

He said understanding the importance of earning revenues and not just spending from the public purse will put a stop to the crippling debt burden on the state.

PNG Post-Courier
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