PORT MORESBY – The independent community watchdog ACT NOW has launched a new website to increase transparency and promote community participation in monitoring public spending.
For the first time, communities across PNG can observe the use of ‘slush funds’ by local members of parliament.
Each year district service and infrastructure improvement grants provide K20 million for each district.
MPs use these funds according to their own personal assessment of local services.
Use of these funds by District Development Authorities - each chaired by the local MP- is supposed to be strictly monitored and audited by government departments.
But the sheer volume of work in supervising 94 districts and confusion around the role and responsibilities of the local MP, the system of checks and balances is completely broken.
In reality, District Development Authorities and members of parliament spend the K20 million behind a veil of secrecy.
The need for accountability has never been greater to monitor this K2 billion in public spending.
ACT NOW has now developed the DDA Watch website which enables users to rank each DDA.
DDA Watch will harness the power of local communities to monitor performance and demand change where outcomes are shown to be inadequate.
People will be given access to important public documents like five-year plans, annual budgets, acquittal and monitoring reports, financial audits and other information.
The website also allows people to upload comments and images and add their own satisfaction ratings.
But it needs people’s support to make it a success.
An innovative & unique approach
DDA Watch is an innovative and unique approach to improving governance through community participation and greater transparency.
The website is funded through community donations and we rely on your support and participation to keep an eye on where that K2 billion goes.
ACT NOW is an independent organisation and receives no funding from government or corporations - so your donations are vital.
You can link here to support DDA Watch through monthly giving or a one-off donation.