RICHARD MENDANI KEREMA'S WORTHLESS MP



by BENNY MALAISA
Gulf is a largely waterlogged province and many habitats, hamlets and communities are cut off from each other and accessibility to services from the outside. Most remote service providing agencies are isolated and largely dysfunctional at the most. Clinics and schools are among the most affected. Health workers and teachers refuse to work in such isolated locations where a Tin of Ox and Palm is purchased for K20.00 and a packet of rice for K10-15.00. 


With a dysfunctional provincial administration their situation is made even more trying. There are those however who take up the sacrifice and challenge. One such school is the Kakoro Primary School situated at the headwaters of the great Lakekamu River, near the border of Gulf and Morobe just where the Bulldog tracks starts on the Gulf half. It takes more than a full day of travel on a dinghy to reach the main Trans island highway. There are no shops here to sell school books, biros, uniforms or such. Everything is from Port Moresby or Bulolo in Morobe. 

They remain hardly aware of what goes on around them. On the 21st March 2017 a cheque #4565 to the tune of K41, 150.00 was drawn from the accounts of the Kerema District Development Authority supposedly development programs for the school. This cheque was drawn and paid not to the school but in the name of the District Administrator Eddie Ori. You will note that the justification is development project: Kakoro P/school but the cheque was drawn to the District Administrator. You will also note that the recipient is also the signing officer on the cheque. 

What makes it all the more interesting is that with full knowledge and in his own writing of the name of the payee and amount the Member for Kerema Open, Richard Mendani signed off clearance and approval for the payment to be made. To further see his endorsement he with his DA, Eddie Ori further went on to both sign the letter of confirmation to BSP’s Paramount Banking. Both the clearance form and letter of confirmation also indicate clearly “Development Project Kakoro P/school.” The cheque was subsequently cashed. 

And here is where it gets even more interesting. The Board Chairman of Kakoro Primary School, Kaia Siwa, Headmaster Edward Elap and Senior Teacher Victor Kokova all confirm they have never received a single toea from the cheque of K41, 150.00 nor were they aware of such a project and the existence of the cheque. From the outset, only both Mr. Mendani and his District Administrator know where the funds went. It would be easy to assume it went to personal use. This was the lead up to elections as well. 

Unashamedly this is how low we have gone to deny adequate teaching supplies and learning facilities for very unfortunate children in a very remote area. And we are the very people mandated and entrusted with the responsibility of ensuring their interests are upheld. Have a look at the pictures below individually.


PART 2 will follow and it talks about "HOW MENDANI WENT JET SETTING OVERSEAS PUTTING TO HIS OWN USE FUNDS MEANT FOR TRAVEL OF GULF STUDENTS STUDYING OVERSEAS."