THE funding to rehabilitate coffee industry in Papua New Guinea is not “free money” for people to misuse, warns Ian Mopafi, chairman of Industry Coordination Committee (ICC) for Productive Partnerships in Agriculture Project (PPAP).
“Those who have run away, we will come after you. This is not a free handout.”
Mr Mopafi issued these challenging statements in a meeting with potential Lead Partners under Call 4 on Tuesday 26 April at Bird of Paradise Hotel, Goroka. The two-day meeting with 22 potential partners which has been screened from 60 applicants ended Wednesday 27.
Mr Mopafi while welcoming the interested partners also urged them to become genuine stakeholders in the coffee value chain to use the loan funding from World Bank and IFAD (International Fund for Agriculture Development) under improved stringent guidelines.
“You must have the financial manpower and capacity to become a partner to increase coffee production and quality.
“Some have already been arrested and charged so the onus is on you.
“This is not another free money for people to get like the NADP where so far no persons had been trialled for misuse of these public money,” said Mr Mopafi.
Project Manager Potaisa Hombunaka reiterated the call for transparency and accountability in the use of funds allocated under PPAP.
The new PPAP manager who took office in September 2015 said many lessons have been learned under Call 1 and 2 and PPAP is tightening up the loose ends to ensure effective reporting to measure actual progress of coffee rehabilitation efforts.
“Many nurseries have been set up by Lead Partners but I want to know have the seedlings been actually planted.
“PPAP consultants and CIC officers will actually go out to check.
“In three years’ time our efforts must contribute to increasing export as required by the government. Otherwise I will go to the government and advise them to stop funding this project because our grandchildren will repay this loan,” said Mr Hombunaka.
“Therefore we must be genuine in our desire to help grow the coffee industry by improving farming practices to increase coffee production and quality hence livelihood of our growers.
“If you do not have this thinking and want to use this money for the coming 2017 general election, then you’re in the wrong place. We will not consider you,” said Mr Hombunaka.
A total of 60 applications were received under Call 4. The applicants have been screened to 22 who will be further screened after this meeting.
One purpose of the meeting is for Lead Partners to become aware of the problems under call 1 and 2 and to improve in their reporting system. The other is for new potential partners to know of the process and procedures in putting together a business plan for consideration towards the final screening stages.
The PPAP is a coffee rehabilitation project of Coffee Industry Corporation (CIC) funded by a loan facility from World Bank IDA (International Development Association) and IFAD (International Fund for Agriculture Development) with counter-funding from GoPNG.
Approved for release:
Potaisa H. Hombunaka (Mr)
PPAP – CIC