28 May 2013

Prime Minister Gusmao acknowledges: "a lot of money has simply been wasted away"

Xanana Gusmao. Image: The News Tribe
ETLJB 28 May 2013 - According to a report published by Jornal Independente yesterday, the Prime Minister Kay Rala Xanana Gusmao has promised that the mistakes of the Parliamentary Majority Alliance Government where State money was improperly used will not be repeated,.

"Maybe you have already heard people ask why this government is so big, and that is because it is needed, and I ask each member of government publicly to take these things into account properly, there has to be good coordination inside the ministries, otherwise, we are useless governors," he said.

The head of government made these statements during his decentralisation and local government discussion for the Dili District, Saturday 25 May last at the Dili Convention Centre.

Xanana acknowledged that during the previous AMP government up to the Fifth Government, a lot of money has been spent by the government improperly, money that has all just melted away.

Despite having wasted a lot of money, Xanana made his analysis of the state whereby he said that in ten or so years of state building after independence, some good things have been done but there have also been some failures also.

"But we also have to acknowledge that a lot of money has simply been wasted away, and it is because of this that from hereon in in the future, we have to identify these malpractices in administration and management, because although we have established a control system it is still not effective," underlined PM Xanana.

To fix this, according to Xanana, we have to revise the character of Timorese, revise their conduct so as to correct the wrongs that have already been committed.

"We also have to undertake a critical analysis that some money has been well spent, but some other money we should not question and we should not ask why it was spent, because it was a need in order to address imbalances in our society," Xanana said.

Because of this the head of government asked the members of government who managed public money, who implement state programs to begin to correct themselves.

As well, regarding the issue of establishment of municipalities, Xanana said that there must be reform on the issue of corruption from the central government to local level.

That he said was important because the government and the state did not want to continue to hear complaints when they descended to the grassroots, whether this state was failing.

"The big risk for us throughout the whole of Timor-Leste is that we have money, which gives us a big advantage in planning our development, and that is s big risk because we cannot all end up drinking sea water," Xanana pointed out.

During this public discussion Xanana expressed that this was the year to fix the house from within, so he asked the private sector to prepare themselves properly.

The private sector he said had to improve its management capacity, as they should not just be happy with gaining some money for projects that they have not properly implemented and then drive around in luxury cars, looking for new projects.

"This nation needs to develop all its sectors, and needs to reform everyone's mentality, and because of this the private sector has to be creative in reinvesting," Xanana stressed. Source: Jornal Independente 27 May 2013 Edited by Warren L. Wright

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