MP: PNG Parliament damage costs inflated

Madang MP Bryan Kramer. Picture: POST COURIER

PORT MORESBY, 22 FEBRUARY 2019 (POST COURIER) – A member of the Papua New Guinea opposition has raised concerns that certain costs associated with the attack on Parliament last year, are being overvalued to benefit a few nefarious entities.

Using his unrelenting social media presence, Member for Madang Bryan Kramer issued out a barrage of posts this week detailing worrying instances that he has found to be questionable.

Using the official Damage Assessment Report that was tabled in Parliament on January 23 earlier this year,Kramer assessed that while many of the cost of damages seemed reasonable, there were a few that were seriously exaggerated.

The main examples of which he stated were the cost of repair work for fingerprint and video access equipment, elevators and damaged water coolers.

Beginning with the latter, Kramer stated that the report’s stated K88,000 (US$26,137) for the replacement of four water purifiers was callous and totally contradictory to current prices for water purifiers.

“The company claims the cost to replace four water coolers is K88,000.

“So they expect us to believe each water cooler is valued at K22,000 (US$6,534). Seriously?” asked Kramer.

It was found by this paper in an independent inquiry that the cost of buying a high-end similar or even better water-intake delivery system sits at the K1400 to K2000 (US$415 – US$594) bracket and not anywhere near the purported K22,000 price per item.

Kramer also brought out that the report indicated that there was damage to the National Houses elevator system with a reported estimated cost of K3.3 million (US$980,000).

The Madang MP questioned the two companies engaged and sub-engaged respectively, that were approached by the government to audit the damage related to parliamentary lift services.

He stated that his concerns were heightened upon finding out that the main company engaged, Port Moresby Lift Services, was owned by a relative of the Prime Minister and that the supposed private company was in fact operating out of an office in Parliament.

All information found by this paper to be true.

Finally, Kramer also disclosed that the K2.17 million (US$664,000) being used as the value for repurchasing and reinstalling 55 fingerprint and video access panels has been bloated somewhat.

He stated that it was absurd to have Sungwoon International Limited, the same company that provided the panels in the first place, give a damage assessment report on their own devices.

“In August 2017 Parliament paid the same company K16,500 (US$4,901) and K1500 (US$445) for fingerprint scanners and video access panels respectively.

“The company, Speaker of Parliament and Clerk of Parliament now want to claim the same products cost K28,500 (US$8,465) and K11,000 (US$3,267) each.

“Based on the above evidence it appears these costs are inflated,” said  Kramer.

He stated that it was his stand that it would cost the country only K275,000(US$81,678).

At most and not the K2.17 million (US$644,000) for access panels as the report indicated.

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