Gov’t vehicles audit to reduce abuse

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“The Ministry will be taking aggressive action against instances where public sector vehicles are misused or abused.”
Clarence E. Pilgrim, permanent secretary in the Ministry of Works warned in a press release yesterday.
Pilgrim is chairman of the Vehicles Use and Management Policy Advisory Committee of the Ministry of Public Works, that issued the press release.
 The press release was aimed at informing government workers that the Government of Antigua and Barbuda will conduct a public-sector fleet vehicle audit from Monday April 30, to Friday May 4.
The impending audit will be used to assess the physical status of the vehicles, look at how effectively the ministries of government can manage the use of the vehicles, and manage the resources needed for use and maintenance of the vehicles.
In an exclusive interview with OBSERVER media following the release, Shawn Thomas, public relations officer (PRO) of the Ministry of Public Works, said: “It has been brought to the attention of the Permanent Secretary … Mr. Clarence E. Pilgrim, that some of the vehicles within the government fleet are being misused and, in some cases, taken advantage of.” 
The PRO reiterated that the audit is also intended to provide statistics on how many of the 700-plus government vehicles are currently operational, and the number of vehicles that need to be fixed or replaced.
According to the press release, failure to comply with the audit, within the given period, will result in unaudited vehicles being refused fuel and maintenance services “in the first instance”.
Thomas pointed out that the initiative was put in place to effectively monitor and maintain the public-sector fleet of vehicles. He stated that the mandatory audit became necessary to reduce the use of the vehicles outside of work hours and for personal purposes, as there have been several reports of this exploitation. 
He added: “A vehicle is an investment, so all efforts are being made to ensure that the government, through the Ministry of Works and Housing, gets value for money.”

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