Vanuatu Govt clamping down on vehicle misuse
Minister in Vanuatu Jotham Napat, is putting a stop to misuse of government vehicles.
A Government Minister in Vanuatu wants to put an end to the misuse of government cars.
The Minister of Infrastructure and Public Utilities, Jotham Napat, says politicians are hiring rental cars unnecessarily, using government cars outside of work time, and spending money on fuel excessively.
He told Lucy Smith that after an audit, the government has worked out that with a few changes, such as installing GPS or locking cars up after work hours, they could save around $US9 million dollars over the next five years.
JOTHAM NATPAT: The ministers are entitled to a vehicle. The minister, the Prime Minister. But under the public service manual, the director general and the first political advisors they are entitled to a vehicle. The rest of the servants are not entitled to a government car. But in the past we have also seen a lot of politicians abusing their privileges on government vehicles. We are not mentioning names, but based on the report there has been a lot of abuse of government vehicles. And I think we need to really regulate that or put a control on that.
LUCY SMITH: So you can't name names or departments of who has been flouting the rules?
JN: It is not really naming people. It's a practice it's becoming a culture where civil servants, politicians have been you know excessively abusing government vehicles. Which means that the budget allocated to vehicles there has been a lot of high consumption on fuel, the government including the civil service have exceeded the budget. What we've actually seen is if we're going to implement these recommendations we'll save the government 1 billion Vatu over the next 5 years.
LS: What's the reaction been like from ministers using those cars?
JN: For the council of ministers for the current government, its they have endorsed that. It's not easy the politicians to accept or approve such recommendations. But I will say some of the civil servants need to lose the privilege of using the car. We need to put a stop on this excessive and abuse of government vehicles.
LS: Is it true you're going to put in GPS ?
JN: That's one of the recommendations from the report. It means you can co-ordinate and also control the usage of government vehicles.
LS: Don't you think some people will think that's a step too far you trust these people with making decisions within the country are they not trusted to use the cars?
JN: I think we've gone past that we have to come up with this control and measure because if we trusted the civil service and politicians then we should not come up with this policy. But there's been a lot of abuse.
To embed this content on your own webpage, cut and paste the following: