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Showing posts from January 16, 2012

HOW AUSTRALIA IS SUCCEEDING WHERE USAID FAILED IN PAKISTAN ...

http://aciar.gov.au/files/node/14028/the_farmer_needs_a_market_17250.pdf





As a result, ACIAR and AusAID have agreed to extend ASLP, with AusAID investing A$12.95 million over four years into ASLP2.


Providing oversight of the program is Dr Munawar Kazmi, who formerly headed the mango production project for Pakistan. He is based at the Australian High Commission in Islamabad.

“We are ready to start phase two, which I am excited about,” Dr Kazmi says. “The goals are the same and build on the outcomes from phase By Gio Braidotti There is growing recognition within the aid community that helping smallholder farmers can have far-reaching benefits for alleviating poverty. Farms can function as a catalyst for greater socioeconomic development and environmental sustainability.

The idea is central to ACIAR operations.

Across programs, ACIAR’s research managers do not just help developing-world farmers better manage their fields, ponds, fisheries or woodland.

 To realise the benefits of greater on-farm…

CHEMONICS PAKISTANI MANGO PROJECT WAS DOOMED FROM THE START & HAS LEFT LOCAL FARMERS HOLDING THE "BAG" ...

Mango Sector.


The goals of the mango activity, as stated in the contract, are to expand sales by 20 percent by producing export-quality mangoes and to employ more people. Chemonics’ second-year implementation plan states that the project successfully designed and implemented several enhancements to mango production that resulted in substantial improvements across the sector and enabled producers to overcome export constraints. 

Contrary to the contractor's 2010 implementation plan, the audit found that the mango activity had not implemented enhancements and was 1 year behind schedule.




After identifying potential domestic and international markets for mangoes, the Firms Project selected farmers to participate in a cost-sharing activity that processed mangoes for export. 

The audit found that the processing arrangement—providing 13 mango farmers with processing equipment that cleans, freezes, and stores mangoes—was not succeeding because equipment was not delivered on schedule. 


Only one…

CHEMONICS SIGNED AN AGREEMENT FOR $89 MILLION WITH USAID FOR PAKISTANI PROJECT ....

From the USAID Internal Investigation ....


To implement the Firms Project, USAID/Pakistan signed an agreement for $89.8 million with Chemonics in May 2009. As of May 2011, USAID/Pakistan had obligated $42 million and expended approximately $29 million on the project. USAID/Pakistan’s Firms Project is conducting economic growth activities in four provinces: Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The audit covered activities implemented from May 2009 through May 2011. The audit team reviewed mission documents concerning project management, agreements, implementation plans, and the monitoring and evaluation plan and procedures. Additionally, the audit team conducted interviews with USAID/Pakistan project administrators, Chemonics officials, and project beneficiaries.

We reviewed applicable laws and regulations as well as USAID policies and procedures pertaining to USAID/Pakistan’s project—namely, certifications required by the Federal Managers’ Financial Integrity Act of 1982 (…

NEARLY 1.4 MILLION IN QUESTIONED EXPENSES BY CHEMONICS ON PAKISTANI MANGO PROGRAM ...

Read the full report.....



http://www.usaid.gov/oig/public/fy12rpts/g-391-12-001-p.pdf





*Types of noncompliance are indicated by the following letters:
A = Lacked procurement receiving report

B = Did not develop a procurement plan

C = Did not document specifications for the goods and services procured

D = Did not document procurement solicitation bids

† The category “Office Make Ready” includes structural renovations.






Appendix III

17

Summary of Chemonics' Questioned Costs


Monthly Invoices Submitted to USAID, June 2009–November 2010

Invoice

Invoice Date

Goods or Services Received

Questioned Amount ($)

Type of Noncompliance*


1. 051008

6/30/2009

Subcontractor/ Consultant/ RSM Co.

49,400.00



2. 051230

7/31/2009

Other Direct Cost / Professional Services

5,550.07



3. 051230

7/31/2009

Equipment & Vehicles / Computer Equipment

9,496.79



4. 051368

8/31/2009

Other Direct Cost / Office Furniture

3,969.33



5. 051368

8/31/2009

Equipment & Vehicles / Computer Equipment

9,693.25







6. 051549

9/30/2009

Other Direct Cost / Office Mak…

COMPLETE USAID INTERNAL INVESTIGATION INTO THE PAKISTANI MANGO PROJECT ...

As of May 2011, USAID/Pakistan had obligated approximately $42 million and expended $29 million on the Firms Project.







USAID’s Office of Inspector General in Pakistan conducted this audit to determine whether USAID/Pakistan’s Firms Project was achieving its main goal: to expand economic opportunities through sales and employment.







A review of the first 2 years showed that the Firms Project was not on track to achieve its main goal. Despite the mission’s attempt to increase sales and employment in a number of sectors—leather, livestock, textile, dates, and mangoes—the audit found no measureable increases in sales or employment.







Project activities did not increase sales or employment in the leather, livestock, textile, or date sectors because of shifts in U.S. Government strategy that resulted in the cancellation of these activities.







Efforts to boost sales and jobs in the mango sector were stalled, and activities to improve competitiveness through economic policy reform were behind schedule…

WILL THERE EVER BE AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE $30 MILLION USD SPENT ON PAKISTANI MANGO PROGRAM ??? ...

OP/ED
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1/16/2012 @ 7:27PM 


Now's the Time to Start Cutting Wasteful Government Programs



Government spending must be cut. The national debt exceeds the annual GDP. Total unfunded liabilities are 14 times as much, more than $200 trillion. Government spending once again must be cut.

Unfortunately, the biggest pots of money have the largest number of dedicated guardians. Interest on the national debt must be paid, unless Uncle Sam is prepared to default, like Greece. Seniors form a phalanx around Social Security and Medicare. Medicaid already ill serves the poor and underpays doctors. The military-industrial complex fights as hard for weapons spending today as it did against communism during the Cold War.

About all that’s left is domestic discretionary spending, roughly 15 percent of the budget. Most everyone in Washington talks about freezing or cutting these outlays, but nothing ever happens. Politicians want pork to distribute and interest groups want grants, loans, loan guarantees, ta…