Investigative committee SAMU Social: up to one-third of board meetings took place in restaurants
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    Investigative committee SAMU Social: up to one-third of board meetings took place in restaurants

    Up to one-third of the SAMU Social board’s meetings took place in restaurants. This appears to have been at the SAMU Social’s expense. The point, in particular, emerged on Wednesday from the content of Aurélien Doffigny, the Financial Director’s comments. He gave these during a nine-hour hearing conducted by the SAMU Social Investigative Committee. This also involved two other managers from the SAMU Social management committee.

    This hearing did not raise all of the issues, which are somewhat hazy around the means of payment and the expenses of some office-holders working in the organisation. Did the Director of SAMU Social, receive double remuneration? How were the fees allocated? A full response has not been provided.

    Aurélien Doffigny thus indicated that he was never able to check which services corresponded to the requests for payment that Pascale Peraïta sent him, whether verbally, by text or by telephone.

    One thing is clear to him: the evidence for the phenomenon of dual payment for the SAMU Social tasks suspected by some, and moreover being investigated, is extremely low. This is because, in such a case, invoices are likely to have emerged from the association’s accounts.

    Relationships between the statutory bodies within the SAMU Social, on the whole made up of public officers, did not pose a problem to operational management. That is if you believe the Head of Education of the third sector organisation, Laurence Bourguignon. She commented, “Sometimes we feel like we are in a room without doors or windows.”

    Ms Bourguigon made no attempt to hide the fact that workers in the third sector organisation, insulted on the telephone, and on rounds, were “greatly affected” by the turmoil caused by the SAMU Social affair.

    The finances of the association which evolved very, indeed one might say too quickly, are not in good shape, but this is mainly linked to the time lag, between the promise of subsidies for the winter plan of action for asylum seekers and the payment of such amounts. Aurélien Doffigny explained that the SAMU Social is thus systematically accumulating assorted payment delays for the ONNS from interest payments to competition issues totalling 140,000 euros just for the 2015 financial year.

    Christopher Vincent
    The Brussels Times