Poor planning is costing church

By Ilia L. Likou ,

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COST ISSUES: The Jubilee church was supposed to cost $7million. In the end, it cost the church   $17.3million. This has alarmed some church members.

COST ISSUES: The Jubilee church was supposed to cost $7million. In the end, it cost the church $17.3million. This has alarmed some church members. (Photo: Misiona Simo / Samoa Observer)

The leadership of the biggest denomination in the country has been urged to review the planning of some of its multi-million projects to avoid wasting money.

The call was made during the Annual General Meeting of the E.F.K.S’s annual conference currently underway at Malua Theological College.

A parish representative raised the issue during the meeting.

“It’s good to take a look at some of the church projects like the John William’s Building,” he said.

 “For the John William’s Building, two and half million was approved for the project but it seems like the money was used up before the project was completed.”

The member questioned the planning of the project. 

He was especially concerned about a proposal for a further $3million to finish it.

 “Now look at the proposal,” he said. “This is just a proposal (to the Fonotele) without showing - how it’s done, the cost of materials and all the details we need to know.”

Bad planning and poor project management end up costing more, he said.

“My understanding then was that the two and half million proposed before was not enough to renovate the building.

“Now, they’ve asked again for another three million to complete the said project and still there is no report from the Komiti-Feau-Eseese to show us how they will spend this three million.”

The church member pointed to another project as an example of proposals that lack detail when they are submitted during the conference.

“A total of seven million tala was approved for the Jubilee Church, and when we finished the project it was up to 18million,” he said.

“Why? Again it all comes down to poor planning. This is costly. I mean everything, now the Jubilee is eleven million tala more expensive than it’s budgeted cost which was initially approved. 

“I’m not complaining to the Committee but as a member of this church we must plan everything well from the beginning before further action. We need to know the costs and everything. Most importantly the church must be clear on how the money is spent.

“It shouldn’t be like the case of where money is given and then five years later, we find out that the cost has tripled.”

The Chairman of the Finance Committee, Le Mamea Ropati Mualia, acknowledged the concern. 

“With regards to the plan for the John William’s building, we told you before that it wasn’t enough...

 “At the Jubilee Church, we started at the original cost of seven million, and then we added fifteen million and now we have reached eighteen million tala.”

Le Mamea said the issues raised should be considered very seriously, especially by the relevant committees.

“My request is for the Komiti-o-Feau-Eseese to please look into these matters before any further action.”

The meeting continues.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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