Report brands NMAG as ‘a national disgrace’
The National [ April 20, 2007 | Read Article Online ]
THE National Museum and Art Gallery has been described as a “national disgrace” by the Public Accounts Committee in its report tabled in Parliament yesterday.
The PAC in its 113-page Report on the Inquiry into the National Museum and Art Gallery (NMAG) and the sale and export of the Swamp Ghost aircraft, found that the museum was incompetently managed and ineffective in carrying out its statutory obligations to manage PNG’s cultural heritage, and failed to protect the property and fiscal interest of the State.
“In summary, a trustee of the NMAG described the museum to the committee as a ‘national disgrace’, which this committee was inclined to agree,” PAC deputy chairman Dr Bob Danaya told Parliament yesterday.
The report stated that the NMAG had and still was subject to the considerable and improper influence of foreigners and foreign companies, which unlawfully obtained, exported and sold war surplus materials from Papua New Guinea.
It stated that the NMAG illegally entered a contract of sale for the Swamp Ghost and thereby breached the Public Finance (Management) Act, the National Museum and Art Gallery Act and the War Surplus Materials Act. The PAC report recommended a thorough investigation and restructuring of NMAG by the Government.
The committee also recommended that the Swamp Ghost be fully restored and preserved within PNG.