Minister moves to curb abuse of Govt. vehicles
The Minister of Works, Transport and Infrastructure, Papali'i Niko Lee Hang, says he will demand an investigation into increasing reports that Government vehicles are being used without authorisation after hours.
Papali'i has also assured he would look into reports about the "abuse of the government vehicles" and have the Police impound any "unauthorised Government vehicle".
“I’ve already sought assistance from the Ministry of Police as they have the appropriate authority under the law to impound these government vehicles,” the Minister said.
In an interview with the Samoa Observer, the Minister confirmed that all the Ministries under his portfolio will have their fleets investigated.
“Any vehicles found on the road after-hours and on the weekend without the appropriate sticker showcased on the windshield, will be impounded by the Police. The vehicles will be taken to the Ministry compound and parked there and the driver can find his/her way home,” explained the Minister.
He reminded that under the law the Police have that authority.
“These are all efforts to curb the abuse of vehicle and save costs for the government as these are government assets. And this has been an ongoing issue and this is one way to address it.”
In February, 2019 the Electric Power Corporation (E.P.C.) appealed to the public to report drivers who are reckless with E.P.C.-owned vehicles in efforts to curb their abuse.
“The initiative is to minimise the abuse of Government assets,” the General Manager told the Samoa Observer.
The Corporation had also posted a public notice on its official Facebook page yesterday.
“The public is hereby advised to report to the Electric Power Corporation any of our vehicles that are speeding on the road. The following information must be reported: vehicle plate number, location, date, time, type of vehicle and your contact details,” stated the notice.
Tologata said Government assets including those owned by his organisation should be well taken care of.
“These are public properties and it should be well taken care of, hence the move by the corporation.”
The Minister was unclear as to the actual budget spent on all the maintenance of Government vehicles under the Ministries in his portfolio.
His portfolio includes agencies such as Ministry of Works, Transport and Infrastructure; Samoa Water Authority; Electric Power Corporation; Samoa Ports Authority; Samoa Airport Authority; Samoa Shipping Corporation; Samoa Land Transport Authority; Samoa Shipping Services and Pacific Forum Line.