OPINION

Mismanagement of state funding

Educators and students alike demanding the channeling of more funds into the state education system are nothing new. They do this every now and again. But the education sector is not the only one that wants more money. Each and every sector seeks to secure for itself the greatest possible share of the pie. But because the pie is only so big, the task of dividing it up is never an easy one. It is only logical that each sector tries to get the biggest piece and just as logical that the government tries to balance those claims as much as possible. But both sides should agree on what is the best way to exploit this funding and how it must be redistributed. Unfortunately, neither the unionists nor the ministries involved have said or done anything with regard to those two challenges. Studies show that government funding is not yielding the results it could. This applies to the education sector, procurements, the health sector and public works. In other words, there is a general problem with the mismanagement of funds, which is more acute in certain sectors. This problem is not purely linked to the scourge of corruption, which is a huge burden for the Greek taxpayer and acts as a brake on growth. It is also linked to the wastefulness which results from wrong decisions, bad planning and the perpetuation of a mass of counterproductive situations. Purging these scourges is perhaps the greatest challenge that the Greek state faces. But this presupposes an iron will by central government and demands a strict audit at all levels of the public sector before planning is relaunched from scratch.