The government has moved in to reduce expenditure emanating from the purchase and maintenance of government vehicles by introducing the public service vehicle loan scheme.
The public service vehicle loan scheme means that senior public service officials from Principal Director level downwards will now purchase vehicles using their own funds instead of using government funds.
The loans will be provided by treasury and managed by the Central Mechanical Equipment Department (CMED) where loan repayments will be done through the revolving transport service fund.
Only value added tax and customs duty will be catered for by the government through the CMED which will also negotiate with car dealers, manufacturers and financial institutions.
The coming in of the loan scheme is clear testimony that the government is not paying lip service to cost containment and expenditure management as enshrined in the Transitional Stabilisation Programme.
The TSP also stipulates conditions of use of government pool vehicles which are often abused by public officials with the government incurring huge maintenance expenses in the process.
For example, a pool vehicle should be parked after official working hours with deterrent fines for any breach of these rules.
The disposal of government vehicles has also caused controversy especially where vehicles are sold at a song, hence the new provisions are meant to ensure that government gets fair value from such disposals.