By Siteri Sauvakacolo
IN 2007, the RFMF’s total expenditure for the purchase of various military stores and camp equipment surpassed $21m — incurring an over-expenditure total of $20,183,924.
However, the RFMF said the expenses incurred were “essential” for the events of December 5, 2006.
This was highlighted in the Auditor-General’s 2007 report.
They were allocated an initial budget of $964,928 for the purchase of equipment that year.
“Standard Government procurement procedures such as obtaining approval from the Major Tenders Board were not complied with,” it reported.
“However, the RFMF later sought retrospective approval from the Minister for Finance through a Cabinet IGCP (07) 291 for the over-expenditure and waiver of approval by the Major Tenders Boards.
“A physical verification of the items purchased revealed that most have not been used and were lying idle in the Store Room and items such as Jungle Hats and Anti Ballistic Glasses were not needed in 2007 because there were stock left from previous years or not used during the year.”
The Auditor-General recommended that excessive purchasing of goods and services not budgeted for should be avoided. The Auditor-General did not receive comment from the RFMF management on this issue.