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Eustace concerned about Government’s capacity to implement programmes

Eustace concerned about Government’s capacity to implement programmes

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Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace has serious concerns about Governments capacity to implement the combined capital programes in this week’s supplementary estimates and those in the 2014 estmates, presented in December last year.{{more}}

Eustace, in his contribution to Wednesday’s debate on the supplementary package, noted that when the projected capital expenditure of EC$72.98 million is added to the EC$237 million included in the 2014 budget, the total goes way beyond any previous capital expenditure in any year in this country.

“No government has spent more than 160 million dollars in any budget. This (estimates) will require us to spend much more; but can we?” Eustace asked.

He noted that the estimates package ($72.98 million capital and $11 million recurrent expenditure), moves the total 2014 budget from EC$911 million to EC$995 million, “just five million short of a billion dollars”, and added that these large budgets are followed by a reduction of $200 million or more the following year.

Eustace said it is not enough just to mobilise funds, but it is the implementation that impacts on people’s lives.

Eustace also questioned whether the ongoing recovery programme will put a strain on the country’s economic performance, and as a consequence its ability to register growth and job creation.

The Opposition Leader said the process of recording names of flood victims and assessing the level of damage continues to be a source of concern and he asked Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves to “look at the list again.”

He said he recognised that party politics may be involved in the relief distribution process.

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