HARD on the heels of action by Oro governor Gary Juffa to crack down on corrupt practices, the provincial treasury (pictured) was broken into again last week in what is believed to be retaliation for efforts to clean out crooked elements in the Oro public service.
Governor Juffa said the most recent crime was unusual because the office contained no cash or valuables. But there was much information included in the files that might lead to fraudulent activity being identified.
He said it was suspicious that the break-in occurred soon after the new provincial treasurer had tightened processes and had demanded accountability and that proper procedures be followed.
It seemed to indicate that certain people in Oro were “hell bent on covering their tracks”, he told Loop PNG, adding that this would not deter the work his office was undertaking in conjunction with the police.
Juffa said his continued efforts to address corruption in Oro had uncovered what appeared to be a syndicate of individuals - including administration, treasury and bank staff – who were collaborating with criminals to defraud the province and the people of funds.
He said the investigations so far had “revealed some interesting names”.
“For too long Oro has been in the grips of criminals who have found ways to bypass processes, procedures and checks to steal public funds.
“The result has been a province that has stagnated in the past 40 years,” Juffa said.
“These were actions by well-educated and trusted officers who have been placed there to serve as public servants.
“There will be no hiding as we are ready to reveal all.
“The thieves and criminals are not those on the streets with guns but those in offices with folders and fraudulent documents.
“We have a new treasurer and provincial police commander and we will get to the bottom of this,” Juffa said.