Colombia’s Inspector General investigates shady govt contracts in drought-ridden north

Posted on Aug 27 2014 - 2:53pm by Today News
Guajira Weather

Colombia’s Inspector General’s Office revealed that 43 disciplinary investigations have been undertaken for irregular contracts in the northern state of La Guajira, with royalties totaling over $180 million.

La Guajira

The multi-million dollar investment comes off the back of fresh disciplinary inquiries into shady government contracts in La Guajira, according to Colombia’s El Espectador newpspaper.

According to senator and former governor of La Guajira, Jorge Ballesteros, only 30% of all government resources allotted for La Guajira, including food programs, actually reach the intended communities.

MORE: Mismanagement of public funds fueling famine in northern Colombia: Senator

The focus of Housing Minister Luis Felipe Henao, however, has been on the pressing issue of helping a struggling region where  thousands of people suffer from lack of water, malnutrition, and disease from using unsanitary water sources.

MORE: 15 children dead from thirst, disease in drought-stricken northern Colombia

Regarding the status of the wells in La Guajira, the minister of housing said, “There are wells that will be built as we advance in Uribia, Maicao, Manaure and Riohacha, and there are others to be rehabilitated.”

He went on to say, “Some wells are working with the Geological Survey to verify their water capacity and determine if they can be rehabilitated or not. But for example, in Maicao we have three works to improve the delivery of water from house to house and improve service delivery.”

The relief efforts come after Colombia’s government watchdog recently called on the State to construct dams and water reservoirs to alleviate the catastrophic water situation, as well as strengthen the deliveries of food and nutritional supplements to the area.

The Ministry of Housing also announced that it is the government’s priority to unlock investments of over $67 million for water projects in the drought-stricken north of Colombia.


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