During the long evacuation period in Santo, a lot of Ambae communities have raised concerns about the huge amount of money being donated to groups representing the people of Ambae in Port Vila.
Donations and contributions flowed in from a lot of appeals and varied from material to financial support but a lot of communities that evacuated from Ambae say they do not know how the money was spent.
During the evacuations from Ambae, it is understood that some apartments were rented by the Port Vila Volunteers to house certain chiefs. These chiefs slept at rented rooms whilst their people were camped out at the evacuation centers.
Question were raised as to who is paying for the rooms and community members say some rooms were paid for by a group from Port Vila who are also receiving money and collecting donations on behalf of the Ambae people.
The Penama Provincial Government President Alban Garae also commented that “some activities initiated were of a major concern as authorities especially the Provincial Government were not involved nor consulted”
The amount of money donated to volunteer groups has not been disclosed but as Ambae people have already been repatriated, it seems the amount of money donated will never be published.
How these groups used the money contributed to them or collected by them is also another question every resident of Ambae will be interested to know as even the people of Ambae who were evacuated from the Island have no idea how the money was spent even though it did come in their name.