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Serious discrepancies in Housing Authority

October 30, 2020 12:46 pm
Housing Minister Premila Kumar has today made public the findings of the Housing Authority Special Investigation Report and the Public Inquiry Committee report.

A special investigation into the Housing Authority has found that the Housing Authority has lost its purpose.

Housing Minister Premila Kumar has today made public the findings of the Housing Authority Special Investigation Report and the Public Inquiry Committee report.

“It operated without any direction and due regard to policies and procedures that were there to guide the Board and Management to carry out their mandate and bring out transparency in any organization.”

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According to the report, the Housing Authority has serious failures in governance, risk management and compliance.

It was discovered that staff were using the demand survey form as an application form and the investigation could find no evidence that the allocation of lots was from the Authority database.

“The general public was not aware that DSF would later become an application form despite DSF clearly stated that “DSF is not an application form for lots being developed. No evidence that the selection of lots was made based on the DSF but not through an application form.”

There was no independent income verification of applicants before lots were awarded, and a handful of them are related to former Housing Authority staff.

“A number of current and former staff of the Housing Authority and their relatives were allocated lots. There is a lack of documentation to confirm whether adequate disclosure of interest was made by the staff.”

The Public Inquiry report has also highlighted numerous issues including staff not understanding the eligibility criteria, losing the application forms for clients and having them re-apply.

“The public enquiry report clearly showed that people have been made to run around by the staff of the Housing Authority and yet have not been allocated lot till today. Most of the public complaints were regarding the poor level of service provided by the Housing Authority staff.”

The Housing Authority Board has been directed to completely overhaul the organization, its internal processes, application methods and staffing.

The eligibility of the CEO and senior managers will also be reassessed.

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