Police in a M4 million fix

Police in a M4 million fix

MASERU – ABOUT M4 given to the police for elections could gave vanished into thin air, as the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) fails to get the police to account for the money.

The money, according to the IEC, was meant to pay police assistants during the 2015 general elections.
Three years on, the police are yet to provide documents showing how the money was used, the IEC told Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chaired by Selibe Mochoboroane.

“It seems as if the money was never given to the police assistants because they have only signed on the papers but there is no evidence to show how much they got,” said one of the IEC Commissioners, Dr Letholetseng Ntsike.

Dr Ntsike said each police assistant was supposed to get M1 800.
She said there were 200 police assistants hired from each district and none of them got their monies, according to the papers she examined.

Deputy Principal Secretary of the Ministry of Police, Ezekiel Senti, said police management suspected fraud and the matter would be investigated.

The matter would not be swept under the carpet, said Senti.
Quizzed by the committee, police accountant Tumisang Bereng was unconvincing and failed to account for the money.

He first said payments for nine districts were processed without any problems except in Qacha’s Nek.
But documents showed otherwise. When members of the PAC perused the documents for verification, it was discovered that police assistants in all the 10 districts had only signed the papers without stating how much they received.
IEC accountant Lerato Lati said there was no proof that the assistants were paid.

“We are not satisfied as the IEC with the information that we got from the police,” Lati said.
“We are not sure if the police assistants were paid because they have signed but the amount of money is not shown on the documents,” she said.

“So we are really not satisfied.”
The committee asked the police to furnish it with documents showing proof of payment to avoid facing the wrath of the law.

Thooe Ramolibeli

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