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Solomons fraud predicted to have dire impact on Australian aid

There is concern in Solomon Islands that Australian aid funding will be curtailed following the discovery of more than one million US dollars worth of fraudulent activity in a health programme supported by AusAid.
So far eight people have been suspended following the discovery of financial irregularities involving Australian aid funding within the Ministry of Health and Medical Services.
A government investigation into the fraud is underway and it is understood that AusAid is also looking into the matter.
The interim head of the Joint Civil Society Group, Barnabas Henson, says Australia may start thinking differently about helping Solomon Islands.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a serious cutback on the funding programme, on the aid programme in the country because one of the major risks in terms of accountability and transparency is the way the Solomon Islands government has been managing funds and donor-funded projects.”
Barnabas Henson says the health sector can ill-afford misuse of funds.

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