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Cyprus

Paphos gets clean bill of health after audit on major projects

Paphos municipality has successfully passed an audit examining the implementation of co-financed projects in the town, it announced on Tuesday.

“Paphos municipality is fully satisfied with the results of the audit and everything was spot on. We are operating with full transparency and moving forwards, distancing us from the scandals of the past,” said a municipality spokesman, referring to the turmoil the town experienced just a few years ago after being hit by a deluge of scandals.

The successful completion of the audit, which examined the four largest projects undertaken in the centre of the city, was achieved without any observations.

The projects were co-funded by using European Funds and the audit of the Internal Audit Service was carried out by Grant Thornton (Cyprus) Ltd.

“A letter to the municipality stated that there were no findings from the final audit report and informed the Paphos municipality that this audit was considered closed,” the spokesman said.

The four major projects came with a price tag of around €20 million in total: the upgrading of the Markideio theatre; upgrading Kennedy Square and the surrounding area and public roads; remodelling and revitalising the centre of Moutallos; and the connection of the small squares close to the town hall, namely, 28th October, Kostis Palamas and Dionysios Solomos squares.

“This result proves that the municipality of Paphos acted on all the projects on the basis of good administration, and following all the procedures provided.”

The letter from Grant Thornton Ltd also thanked the municipality for constructive cooperation, which, “has resulted in the adoption and promotion of measures that help to strengthen the management and control procedures of programmes funded under the Operational Programme ‘Competitiveness and Sustainable Development’.”

Mayor of Paphos Phedonas Phedonos announced the projects, along with others, to the public in 2016.
At the time he referred to the long list of Paphos corruption scandals and repeated his pledge for clean, transparent local government.

“We must fight to successfully meet the challenges of the times and create the conditions for a safe and orderly restart of the local economy, free from the errors and omissions of the past, from the unacceptable phenomena of rot and corruption that led Paphos to the brink of destruction,” he said.

He promised: “Paphos can become a model of good governance and serve as an example of proper service of the public.”

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