We refer to the parliamentary debate during question time on 17 August 2015 on the Auditor-General’s Office annual audit for FY 14/15 of government departments and statutory boards.
During the debate, Aljunied-Hougang-Punggol East Town Council (AHPETC) was mentioned. DPM Tharman Shanmugaratnam claimed that even if the operating grant withheld by the Ministry of National Development (MND) for FY 14/15 is paid in its entirety into AHPETC’s Sinking Funds, it would not be sufficient to comply with AHPETC’s sinking fund obligations for the financial year.
This is incorrect.
Despite the withholding of the annual operating grant for FY 14/15 from AHPETC since April 2014, AHPETC has, to date, fully made 3 quarterly transfers for FY 14/15, from its operating funds to sinking funds, as follows:
The total amount of monies to be transferred to Sinking Funds for FY 14/15 is $20.05 m.
Transfers made to date for FY 14/15:
Quarter Date Amount
First Quarter 7 Nov 2014 $ 4.41 m
Second Quarter 13 Feb 2015 $ 4.37 m
Third Quarter 8 Jul 2015 $ 4.46 m
Total transferred to date $ 13.24 m
The balance left to be transferred to Sinking Funds would be $20.05 m less $13.24 m which equals to $6.81 m.
According to the court papers filed by the MND in the High Court in March 2015, MND has withheld for FY 14/15 total operating grants of $7.2 m due to AHPETC.
If MND accedes to AHPETC’s request to deposit the entire grant amount of $7.2 m into AHPETC’s Sinking Funds, AHPETC would more than fulfil its obligations to transfer Sinking Funds for FY 14/15.
AHPETC Chairman Ms Sylvia Lim had raised her hand during the Parliamentary session to clarify the above, but the Speaker of Parliament did not notice her.
AHPETC has also made all necessary Sinking Fund transfers for the preceding years for FY 11/12, FY 12/13 and FY 13/14.
ALJUNIED-HOUGANG-PUNGGOL EAST TOWN COUNCIL
17 Aug 2015