Reduce expenditure or face financial ruin – Narube tells A-G
31 May, 2020, 6:12 am
Attorney-General and Economy Minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum is to blame for the reduction in government revenue, claims former Reserve Bank of Fiji governor and Unity Fiji Party leader Savenaca Narube.
He said the A-G must immediately reduce unnecessary expenditure as failure to do so would bring “financial ruin” to the country.
Mr Narube was responding to comments made by Mr Sayed-Khaiyum in Parliament on Thursday, where he said the former RBF Governor had “got his maths wrong” because he “missed the fact that revenue has decreased by a billion dollars”.
Mr Narube’s comments, which appeared on the front page of The Fiji Times on Thursday, called for Government to act quickly to save jobs and the economy.
“The Minister for Economy has put his cart before the horse,” Mr Narube said.
“Government revenue has plummeted not only because of COVID-19 but also because of his optimistic revenue and GDP projections.
“He must take the blame.”
Mr Narube said Mr Sayed-Khaiyum had failed to prudently manage the economy.
“Very importantly, let us look at the choice he has taken as our financial controller to face this reality.
“Any good financial controller knows the golden rule of financial management and that is to use the lever that he can control.
“He cannot control revenue but he can control expenditure. He is using the wrong lever.
“He cannot be insisting that it’s business as usual when people are suffering. He must reduce spending to match the reduction in revenue.
“He must cut unnecessary expenditures like vehicles. He must request statutory bodies to stand on their own. The people expect Government and statutory bodies to make sacrifices and share the load in this very difficult time.
“Blaming the reduction in revenue, which he helped create while continuing to spend, will bring financial ruin to the nation.”