KATHMANDU: Ministry of Home Affairs has refused to accept radio communication devices worth millions of rupees ‘forcefully’ offered by the United Nations Development Programme.
According to MoHA Under-secretary Baburam Bhandari, UNDP officials tried to hand over 200 walkie-talkie sets manufactured by Motorola Solutions to MoHA two weeks ago though the ministry had never demanded such equipment from the UN agency. “We refused to accept UNDP equipment, as it was neither a part of any agreed project nor a fresh demand of the ministry,” he told this daily.
UNDP officials have stored nine cartons of the sets inside a meeting hall of the National Emergency Operation Centre on their own after ministry officials refused to accept the same, he said. According to sources, UNDP purchased the sets with the Department for International Development funds without assessing the needs of the concerned stakeholders in the country. UNDP’s senior programme officer Kedar Babu Dhungana, however, claimed that walkie-talkie radio sets were purchased for district and region-based emergency operation centres for the enhancement of the existing communication practices, especially at the time of disaster.
A version of this article appears in print on July 23, 2015 of The Himalayan Times.