There is absolutely no need for an independent probe into the state’s finances as the Comptroller and Auditor General’s annual report is sufficient, Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong said today.
He was reacting to demand put forward by the Hynñiewtrep Youths Council (HYC) pressure group yesterday calling for such a probe to identify where Meghalaya is wanting in terms of financial management since the government cannot pay pending dues, including to the state’s teachers that have been owing for months.
Whatever financial crisis the state is going through is not down to mismanagement but due to the effects the Covid-19 pandemic has had on the economy, whether that of the state, of the nation or of the planet as a whole.
“It is not just governments that do not have funds. Even ordinary households do not have any money. Is this because of mismanagement? No, it is because of the pandemic,” Tynsong said.
One of the chief criticisms of the HYC is that, though the government finds it impossible to source the funds necessary to pay teacher salaries, it is perfectly able to spend vast amounts on political appointees who enjoy cushy jobs, salaries and perks.
Tynsong did not reject this accusation, merely saying that it is part of the way things have been done for decades.
“You can’t help it. We did not invent this system. Right from the day Meghalaya attained statehood, this system was in place and we are continuing with it,” he said, though he quickly added that this government is taking steps to curb unnecessary expenditure.