After 8 years and $7.5 million, hospital remains incomplete
18 March, 2023, 11:30 am
EIGHT years on and after the use of approximately $7.5 million of taxpayers’ funds, the people of Rotuma still await the completion of the Rotuma Hospital.
This was revealed by Rural, Maritime Development and Disaster Management Minister Sakiasi Ditoka after his three-day tour of the Island. During his tour of the island, the minister noted several government projects have been delayed due to “top-down approaches” used by the previous administration.
“As far as the development is concerned, we see a lot of it unfortunately might have been from a top-down approach in some circumstances can be beneficial, but in some circumstances it is probably not so beneficial,” he added.
“We have the hospital that is now eight years. It has taken eight years, but it is yet to be completed. It has cost us about $7.5 million. We are going to match the needs on the ground and the solution for those needs.”
Works in the hospital began in March 2015 with a team from the Republic of Fiji Military Forces contracted for the construction of the hospital. According to media reports from the time, approximately $4.6 million was allocated for the project by the FijiFirst government.
The first phase of the construction was allocated $2.2 million as construction began with the building of the administration block, the hospital kitchen, and the mortuary.
However, in an article by The Fiji Times on July 23, 2021, anomalies were detected by the Auditor-General in his 2019 Audit Report on General Administration Sector, the report stated that during phase two of the project RFMF engineers did not engage subcontractors “in an open and transparent manner”.