MES –TELEPHONE BILLS – REFUND (26/06/12)
(No. B/371) Dr. R. Sorefan (Fourth Member for La Caverne & Phoenix) asked the Minister of Education and Human Resources whether, in regard to the Director of the Mauritius Examinations Syndicate, he will, for the benefit of the House, obtain from the Syndicate, information as to if the Director has been refunded the sum of Rs18,362 and Rs13,218, respectively, for his telephone bills for March and April 2011 and, if so, why.
Dr. Bunwaree: Mr Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am informed that the Mauritius Examination Syndicate has settled the telephone bills in respect of the mobile of its Director for an amount of Rs18,362 and Rs13,281 for the months of March and April 2011 respectively.
The Director was, in fact, on overseas mission for period 28 March to 05 April 2011 when he attended the Annual Review Meeting held at the Cambridge International Examinations in the UK. During his mission, he has also had discussions with the School of Asian and African Studies regarding collaboration with the University of London with respect to translation and moderation of all Asian papers.
Mr Deputy Speaker, Sir, the Director of an Organisation such as the MES is called upon to be in regular contact with his Office even when he is on mission overseas, for purposes of queries and other matters pertaining to examinations. His official mobile phone was, therefore, on international roaming during the period of his overseas mission. As such, all incoming and outgoing calls as well as emails were chargeable by the Mauritius Telecom. I am informed that the relatively high cost of the telephone bill was due to incoming and outgoing international calls and the blackberry service.
I would like to add, Mr Deputy Speaker, Sir, that the claims have been settled with the approval of the Board of the Syndicate.
Dr. Sorefan: Thank you, Mr Deputy Speaker, Sir. I heard the hon. Minister saying ‘his official mobile phone’, but the document that we have -2585261 is his private phone number which he is claiming and I have a document which I am going to table.
I would like to know from the hon. Minister if the Director has written a letter to the Financial Department of the MES asking for refund of this money?
Dr. Bunwaree: I said it was approved by the Board. He gave all the explanations.
The hon. Member, himself, met the Director for a personal problem and a request that he asked.
He knows well what type of man he has in front of him.
Dr. Sorefan: Mr Deputy Speaker, Sir, I am Dr. Sorefan. There are 15 Dr. Sorefan in Mauritius. I never met him!
Dr. Bunwaree: Pena manière! To ouler mo répéter…
The Deputy Speaker: Next question, hon. Mrs Ribot!
Mrs Ribot: He has not finished yet.
The Deputy Speaker: You have supplementary questions; please go ahead.
Dr. Sorefan: Mr Deputy Speaker, Sir, may I ask the hon. Minister if he can table or place a copy of the Minutes of Proceedings of the Board in the Library and whether the director was present on the Board?
Dr. Bunwaree: No, Sir, I won’t do that.
Dr. Sorefan: Sir, I am tabling the documents.
The Deputy Speaker: Next question hon. Ribot!