KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 23, 2011): The government has to buck up in the way public funds are managed as the people are “fed up” with recurring problems and hearing the same excuses, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) said today.
“The government should not go on like this ...” said its chairman, Datuk Seri Azmi Khalid, pointing out that “year after year the PAC has been hearing the same problems and excuses being given at all levels and all agencies of government”.
“Every time we discuss, it is the same story. I think the people are also fed up with the reports and sometimes the auditors become the target because they publish the truth which is not favoured by the departments,” he said.
“Surely there is a common problem in the administration,” he said, adding that if the government wanted the country to be fully developed by 2020, it should rectify this problem.
“We see this as an indication that our management system should be reviewed. The way in which we manage today should be at par with current needs. Past practices can no longer be tolerated,” he said.
Azmi said the PAC will be calling up the Finance Ministry and the chief secretary to the government on the matter as the same problems had been recurring in all the agencies since 2008.
“The management system needs to be relooked ... the improper planning, poor management and the most common complaint is the delay of approvals,” said Azmi, who did not mince his words at a press conference after meeting representatives from the Agricultural and Agro-based Industry Ministry in relation to the controversial National Feedlot Centre project.
The government, he said, needed to address weaknesses in the system and revamp the administrative system as the same problems included poor management, delayed approval and execution and changing targets.
“If we ask the departments, they will all give us a myriad of excuses and most of the time it is the same answers. They will say they did everything correctly. Their intentions may be good, but it is the implementation that is being questioned,” Azmi said, adding that PAC will call ministries involved to revamp their administrative ways.
On the meeting on the National Feedlot Centre project, he said the hearing was on how the money given for the cattle farming project was disbursed, adding that the ministry gave out the money before the agreement was signed.
He said PAC will call National Feedlot Corporation for an explanation in January after it met the ministry, Finance Ministry and chief secretary to the government.
Money from a RM250 million loan for the project was used to buy two luxury condominiums at RM6.9 million each.
The NFC said it had parked the money for an abattoir project in the property to earn higher income.