BY BARNABAS MANEBONA
REPORTt from Transparency Solomon Islands (TSI) shows that between the seven years period from 2010-16, a total of $27,410,922.32 was spent on the development of each constituency.
Between these years period, the total (Actual) amount of Tax payers’ money/public funds going through the Members of Parliament (MP) for the Constituency Development Fund [CDF] is $1,370,546,115.71.
For each Constituency, 1. Choiseul Province received $82,232,766.96, 2. Western Province – $246,698,300.48, 3. Malaita Province – $383,752,912.48, 4. Central Province – $54,821,844.64, 5. Rennell/Bellona Province – $27,410,922.32, 6. Guadalcanal Province – $219,287,378.56, 7. Honiara City – $82,232,766.96, 8. Makira Province – $109,643,689.28, 9. Temotu Province – $82,232,766.96 and 10. Isabel Province – $82,232,766.96
According to TSI, they understand that MPs’ have changed in some constituencies but the majority of sitting members of Parliament in the 9th Parliament are still members and there are those who have been there.
“As we travel around the constituencies, water and sanitation are a major issue for the people as is most everything.
“Other social infrastructure in the community are from peoples own effort and sweat and other donors. We see very little that says funded and supported by CDF.
“We also acknowledge that some constituencies with new members are beginning to see positive changes and now participating in a small way to constituency development plans.
“In others we are given copies of policy of a sitting member clearly stating that only those who vote for the MP should receive CDF projects.
“Whilst these are lingering questions, the biggest question is where has all these money gone to and why is it not bringing about the desired outcomes.
“It is time now that people should expose the CDF Scheme for what it is and carry out detailed community audit to find out where has the funds meant for improvement of lives of our people gone and those who have been abusing the entrusted power given to them by the people be brought to justice or answer to citizens of this country.
“Transparency Solomon Islands is committed to evidence based advocacy to help empower our people to ensure of the gaps we now see where the richer get richer, the poorer get poorer in every aspect of their lives.
“Let us work together to bring about socio-economic development in our country. There is money but for now it is spent on wasted efforts. We need to speak up and take action,” says TSI.
According to locals speaking to Island Sun yesterday, $27million during that period is enough to see tangible changes in the constituencies apart from witnessing only few OBMs and solar panels being usually handed over.