Lack of full-time administrator blamed for the malaise
MARGAO: The practically non-functioning of the office of Administrator of Comunidades of South Goa has totally paralysed the 90 comunidades who cannot pay the dividends for the second year in succession and are also unable to settle the bills of their advocates and other matters.
In the first place, elections of the comunidade managing committee were held in December when the shareholders and components were busy with Christmas celebrations and during the period when the dividends were supposed to be paid.
Little wonder that quorum was formed at only 15 of the 40 comunidades in South Goa and in only 10 of the other 50 comunidades in South. And till date there is no communication from the government about what is to be done with the comunidades where no quorum was formed and now that the code of conduct has come into force this matter will be dealt with only after the election results are declared on May 23.
Often the office of the Administrator of Comunidades would be held as additional charge, which used to result in the officer not giving full time to the department. But in January this year, Rochelle Fernandes was appointed as the full time administrator of comunidades.
However, barely had she taken over, she was transferred on March 15 and Fiona Cardoso who is the deputy director of panchayats and also is superintendent at Hospicio was given additional charge as Administrator of Comunidades. Since then she visited the office just once on March 20 to take charge.
Margao Comunidade President Savio Coreia said the administrator of comunidades in South Goa is like a “tourist” who does not serve for more than three months besides the fact that it is generally given as additional charge.
Attorney of Nagoa Comunidade Joao Philipe Pereira opined that the staffers at the administrator’s office “are having a ball of a time as there is nobody to supervise or monitor them”. He also complained that bills submitted by the comunidades have not been countersigned since October 2018, as such the comunidades cannot pay bills specially of the advocates who are fighting various cases.
He also pointed out that for the second year in succession comunidades will not be able to pay dividends only because the Administrator has asked them to pay 42.5 per cent of their net income as “derrama” while the comunidades in their budget had planned to give only 10 per cent.
“We are paying 30 per cent of the income as Income Tax and if we pay 42.5 per cent as derrama the comunidade will be left with a pittance from which we cannot distribute the dividend,” he said lamenting that there is no full time administrator to understand and deal with this problem.
Some other managing committee members pointed out that it has been a long time since the Administrator heard cases especially the ones pertaining to illegal constructions and this is causing another problem for the comunidade functioning.