Saturday, 22 September 2007 9:36 AM

Lilo Orders Investigation into SP Games Fund

The Minister of Finance, Gordon Darcy Lilo, has ordered an investigation into how funds allocated for the recent South Pacific Games in Samoa was spent.

Responding to media queries yesterday, Mr Lilo said the government's financial regulations require reporting on how public funds are expended anywhere.

"The investigations will go on. This is a healthy thing. Anywhere public money goes to - there will always be a follow up on reporting on how expenditures are made," he said. Mr Lilo said the move is not his own imposition to exert power but it's a lawful requirement.

"That is not my own imposition, that is a requirement by the law based on the financial system that we adopted," he said. "For anyone to think that it is my own imposition just to exert my control over the way to show power is wrong."

He said the law itself says that when or wherever public money is spent, there has to be accountability and reporting afterwards.

"That process has to proceed. It's a lawful requirement not my own," he said.
The government had spent a total of SBD $5-million-dollars to send a contingent of over 300 athletes and officials to the recent games.

This is the first ever biggest government support to any contingent to the pacific games.