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Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Daily Lessons from Life 02 May 2017 - Workers' Party Town Council Issue AGAIN!!

"Appointment of AHPETC managing agent tainted 'right from the start'; auditors call for probe - 02 May 2017 CNA

SINGAPORE: The appointment of FMSS as the managing agent for the defunct Aljunied-Hougang-Punggol East Town Council (AHPETC) was tainted "right from the start" and warranted further investigations, accounting firm PwC said in a report submitted on Tuesday (May 2).

The auditor added that Punggol East constituency could have saved at least S$500,000 during the time it was managed by the Workers' Party-run town council, had AHPETC followed proper procedure in awarding contracts and making payments.

The accounting firm was appointed by Pasir-Ris Punggol Town Council (PRPTC) to review past payments made by AHPETC during the time the Workers' Party was managing Punggol East SMC.

PRPTC took over the management of Punggol East after the People's Action Party took back the constituency in the 2015 general election, and AHPETC was renamed the Aljunied-Hougang Town Council (AHTC).

In their report, PwC auditors found that the appointment of FMSS as managing agent was not in accordance with the Town Councils Financial Rules, and involved a circumvention of the provisions and safeguards prescribed in the rules. "It could not be said to be done in the best interest of the town council or in good faith," the report stated.

It added that the "tainted circumstances" surrounding the appointment of FMSS would put the propriety of payments made to FMSS into question.

The auditors noted that it also appeared that "a deliberate course of action could have been taken by some within the town council" to appoint FMSS as the managing agent.

However, they said that it was beyond the scope of the review to look into potential criminal liability, and instead stated that the circumstances may warrant further investigations.

The report also concluded that FMSS – which was incorporated on May 15, 2011, seven days after the general election that year – had already been assured of the job as managing agent.

Some of the elected town councilors had already decided to appoint FMSS, even before the incumbent company, CPG Facilities Management, had expressed any preference to be released, the report said.

"It also appears to us that the circumstances collectively may give rise to inferences that a deliberate course of action could have been taken by some within the town council to appoint and install FMSS as the MA," the auditors said.

"These circumstances clearly taint the appointment of FMSS right from the start."

The report did not name any individuals, but stated that "those within the town council who had brought about the present situation where improper payments under the above circumstances have been determined, ought to be fully responsible for all losses the town council may suffer"."

Goodness gracious! WP's troubles with Town Council (TC) simply will never end!!

A bit surprise that PwC's Report actually goes to the extend of saying that: "those within the TC .... ought to be fully responsible for all losses the TC may suffer."

I wonder what is the PAP TC's process when it won Potong Parsi from Mr Chiam's party in GE2015. Did Potong Parsi TC goes its own way or was managed by a bigger existing PAP TC?

For Ponggul TC, when WP won it in the by-election, I wonder if it is reasonable to assume that the incumbent Managing Agent (MA), CPG Facilities Management, would have expressed its desire to STAY ON? At least from the recent history, WP's Aljunied TC had a tough time getting the SAME CPG Facilities Management to stay on. At that time, they could not wait to tell the WP AHTC that they want to quit since it is now an opposition political party's ward!!

Of course, repeating the old story of the Town Council Management System software was yanked from AHTC by a 2-dollar PAP members owned company around the same time may be a bit late today though it was a fact that WP AHTC's were crippled by lack of proper system to manage a much larger TC!!

Anyway, it will be interesting to see where this ONE will lead as for the OLD AHTC saga, many heavyweight PAP members who are Cabinet Ministers had seemingly being insinuating that the WP MPs have neglected their duties and responsibilities and might have even committed 'frauds or improper payments, etc.' though never actually bringing CPID or police charges against the same group of people.


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