9 Apr 2008

Fiji finance ministry takes rental issued from PSC

9:14 am on 9 April 2008

After several high profile negotiations, Fiji's Finance Ministry is taking over the management of rental agreements for government ministries.

The agreements were previously overseen by the Public Service Commission and its Chairman, Rishi Ram, says responsibility for management has just been transferred.

He says the interim Prime Minister, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, felt such negotiations should be handled by finance:

"It all came down to the management of the large sum that is involved in the payment of rental. Something like 20-25 million is paid annually and finance was probably thought to be the best ministry which could handle the management of rented quarters and funds involved."

There have been worries among provincial councils who own office blocks about the security of lease deals with government.

This year, the interim regime has been in rental negotiations with the owners of two buildings in Suva, Kadavu House and Namosi House.