Overspending Revelations: Government Projects and Shenanigans

Public Works and Transport Minister Ro Filipe Tuisawau has revealed that under the FijiFirst Government, the Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) overspent its annual budget by $405 million from 2020 to 2023.

Tuisawau also highlighted the controversial expenditure of $600,000 on bougainvillea plants for the Nadi four-lane road project during a debate on the 2024-2025 Budget in Parliament this week. “When we came in, everything was not as rosy as what the Opposition is saying,” he remarked.

He elaborated that a special audit of the FRA covering a three-year period from July 2020 to 2023 showed a cost variation and escalation totaling $405 million. “These variations were largely facilitated through flying minutes and with the concurrence of the minister of everything who is no longer here,” he added. Tuisawau pointed out that this amount exceeded the annual budget for each of the three years and is equivalent to 10% of the national budget.

“The Opposition continuously emphasizes big projects. This government is not about big projects; it’s about projects that enhance the livelihood and uplift the lives of the people,” Tuisawau said. He cited the Nadi four-lane project, initially budgeted at $65 million but escalated to around $50.9 million, which included the non-tendered expenditure of $600,000 for bougainvillea plants.

“These are the shenanigans which we had to fix when we came in as the Coalition Government,” Tuisawau stated.

He also revealed that a $23 million debt from the previous government for engineering services had just come to his attention. Tuisawau proposed putting forth a motion to divide the $23.8 million debt among the 26 Opposition members, equating to a surcharge of $915,000 each, to be paid at $20,500 a month before their term ends in 2026.

Popular Categories

Latest News

Search the website