… the fun that is called a feeding frenzy of graft and corruption. The same kind that happens each and every time a “disaster” hits the planets… where we see all the appeals, and fund-raising and aid and assistance and…
Reminds me of working for the SI government in the 80s… I watched the feeding frenzy as I worked on Malaita after Namu. I saw that some folks had “rebuilt” before my team showed up to assess the damage. Sad thing was that those who had rebuilt got little or no assistance. Those who either could not rebuild or chose not to rebuild got roofing iron, nails, timber. I know that this taught the populace to not rebuild after the winds die down.
Then again in the 90s… I recall one sad/ funny story where the blue and orange tarps that were sent to Ren-Bel as emergency supplies, in about 93, were claimed as essential properties lost in a cyclone in 95. The message was “send more tarps”, we like them better than normal roofing materials. SO screw the housing rehab projects worth meg-bucks… just send more tarps.
The again in 2007, when Gizo got nailed, and mega bucks in aid and assistance was sent to “help” those suffering. I believe there are still UN “emergency tents” in use up in the hills. And the roads, after millions in expense, are worse than they were in the 80s.
It’s now a new decade, and we have a new disaster. I can feel the schools of carpet-bagging sharks swimming east already.
I forgot to mention the 1985/86 cyclone that hit Tikopia… my VSO friend, Bernard James, was visiting Tikopia when they got hit hard. No aid was sent. It was, I recall, 3 months before Bernard got back to town. They had lived on the emergency food, poi poi. Bernard was thin as a rake. No aid programmes made it to Tikopia that year. BJ’s stories of survival were epic. No one died, I think one broken arm or leg was tended in the “cyclone cave”. All survived and lived to weather more storms in the future… without any aid.
Temotu Premier Fr Brown Beu says all funds towards the relief and recovery effort towards the disaster should be channelled through Temotu provincial account.
Speaking to the paper yesterday he said this is to avoid what happened to funds allocated for the Western province during the 2007 tsunami funds where some of the funds are being mismanaged.“This must not be repeated.”
The premier said they have established a disaster committee that oversees the despatch of the relief funds to the affected areas.
Provincial secretary Ambrose Palusi was the chairperson and it comprised of other authorities in Lata such as police members.
“I warned the committee must be accountable particularly proper records is important to ensure transparency is upheld.”
He said channel funds through government institutions such as the national disaster management office – NDMO sometimes has political influence and the funds not used for its intended purpose.
“I appeal to Red Cross and national disaster management office not to bow down to political influence because I don’t want corruption to creeps in.”
In a statement from the Opposition Office last week it said the Government must ensure that funds for the Temotu tsunami relief programme are used for their purpose and are fully accounted for unlike what happened to the 2007 Western Province tsunami funds.
Dr Sikua said the Government must be reminded that the taxpayers of donor countries that assist in any relief efforts always want the money donated by their governments spent on re-building the lives of intended recipients and not to finance MPs, he said.