The Fiji National Provident Fund Board (FNPF) is reluctant and unwilling to release the report of Deloitte Forensic Audit Report that was made public in 2010. The report costing of $1.5million to members of FNPF has successfully got cleared the past APRIL developer as well as Gerard Saliot, the founder of alleged wrongdoing relating to the investment made by FNPF in the project of Natadola from June 2004 to till March 2007.
Sticking strongly to the instructions by their masters, the military appointed the FNPF Board giving unlawful termination to the contract held by APRIL which comprised of Project Managers as well as Project Developers. They have been replaced by Bryan Jacob accompanied by his co-conspirator Sanjay Kaba of HLK Jacob who were both given the positions of structural engineers. The report dating 21 July 2010 that remained secret was divided into numerous sections related to Natadola:
- Funding Investment;
- Location of purchased assets:
- Payments given to suppliers;
- Conflicts of interest;
- Making of term deposits by FNPF; and
- The governance procedures of FNPF;
These entire sections have no relevance in the connection of APRIL with Natadola project and to Gerard Saliot as well. There were no issues of payments during the management held by APRIL and even no wrong payments were found to be involved in the entities of Gerard Saliot. Certain findings by the Report say about the Development Manager who had made appointments of consultants during APRIL period without being fully transparent or following the public tender process.
However, it has been noted by Deloitte that it was the FNPF or Project Board that were responsible for making the actual appointment in each case and no evidence has been found indicating the abuses made by APRIL to its position in the connection of such appointment. Based on the investigative findings by Deloitte the FNPF had in fact, incurred Fiji $350M over its investment at Natadola which looked contrast to F$240M as budgeted by APRIL in November 2006.
The report reportedly found no justification and basis over the assertion made by chairman of Natadola Bay project Felix Anthony over inflowing of $100 million from the removal of APRIL in the connection of Natadola development.
During the course of investigation carried out, Deloitte brought out a long list with a given classification called ‘lower risk payments’. The Report had a conclusion having no payments found involved at the category in the entities of APRIL. What about all those payments that are related to Bures at Natadola? Similarly, the Report again found the entire payments were all in order without any evidence showing improper delivery, invoicing or payment as well.
Further, the APRIL had never been involved in abusing its position in the context of appointments etc.
There are notes by Report saying after the termination of APRIL, there emerged a serious defect in the process of FNPF that should have been remedied but never done. Significantly, there has been no appointment of any competent Development Manager and replacement of GL Lal auditor as well. The findings of Deloitte governance got concluded referring the practices of FNPF are to be made to FICAC. Subsequently, FICAC made an important visit to FNPF and had taken away all the records of Natadola. It is still to be known whether any action being initiated thereafter. But till today no action has been found taken yet..?
Lastly, none of the forensic audit had been adverse or unfavorable to Mr. Louis Gerard Saliot as well as APRIL….unlike to Felix Anthony accompanied by his cronies as well.
Subsequently, the forensic audit has all the favorable elements about the reputation of Gerard Saliot but sadly it would never be said that the light of the day is within his reach. Practically, under the law of Fiji the position of APRIL would remain helpless and can never expect to get his highly deserved assets back….! The only best thing all of us can hopefully expect is the agitation by locals (Fiji) to get the Deloitte Report released and published one day. We wouldn’t be able to hold our breath…!