Inadmissible allowances paid to PHPA-I officials

Contrary to government rules and regulations, the Punatshangchhu Hydropower Project Authority-I has paid different kinds of allowances to both government and project officials worth Nu 3.2 M.

The audit report 2014 stated, besides the government’s disapproval, it also contravened the existing pay and allowance structure of government employees.

Several officials within the department of hydropower system and the Ministry of Economic Affairs were paid allowances for taking up additional work. But these officials were neither on secondment nor on deputation with the project.

The audit report stated such payments were inadmissible. The report also asks the project authority to take up the matter with the government, as it was not covered under the existing government rules.

The project authority has responded to the audit saying the matter was in fact under review by the government and a decision was being awaited.

The audit report suggested that the project’s management should seek approval from higher authorities before making such allowance payments to the civil servants in future.

Such allowances could give rise to conflict of interest situation and create undesirable precedence states the report.

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