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Auditor-General registers displeasure over public service audit processes 

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Daniel Y. Domelevo

Mr Daniel Yaw Domelevo, the Auditor-General (AG) has registered displeasure over audit processes and procedure in the public service of various institutions use.

He said, henceforth, the AG under the provision of the constitutional mandate would block the salaries of public officials who disregarded and disrespected audit processes and that Article 187 (7) of (ii) the AG would disallow payments and surcharge officials.

“If people think that , they can wait till two years later then they write management letters to tell us about evidence, which they claim was there during the time of the audit, they are never going to get away with it any longer” he said.

Mr Domelevo said this during the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of parliament sitting held in Tamale on the AG report for the 2015 Polytechnics and Technical Universities within the three Northern Regions.

The Tamale Technical University (TaTu), the Wa and Bolgatanga Polytechnic reports for 2015 submitted to Parliament by the AG were reviewed by the committee to ensure transparency and accountability of public funds.

In the AG’s report, the committee noticed that most of the financial laid down procedures in the procurement of most institutional facilities were breached, which the committee considered as mismanagement of public funds.

The committee gave a two week ultimatum to the Wa Polytechnic to retrieve an amount of GH¢18000 paid as salaries to staff to which the committee considered as mismanagement of the public funds.

Mr Joseph Bendah, Acting Finance Officer for the Wa Polytechnic said management of the institution had requested for legal assistance from Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) to help in the retrieval of those monies.

Mr Solomon Namlit Boar, the Deputy Northern Regional Minister and member of the PAC drew the committee’s attention to the fact that most of the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GetFund) projects to construct classroom  facilities were uncompleted prior to AG’s previous reports to complete those structures in the TaTu.

Dr James Klutse Avedzi, Chairman of the committee said the committee’s work was aimed at chasing the value for money to ensure that public officials adequately used public funds in accordance with the appropriate laws to avoid mismanagement and misappropriations.

He said Parliament had no prosecutorial powers to punish public officials who misappropriated public funds, but assured that the committee’s recommendations would inform the appropriate authority like the Attorney General to punish anyone who was found in any act of mismanagement.

He urged public officials to consider using the Public Financial Management Act and the Financial Administration regulations as by-laws in offering financial advice to heads of departments who intended using public funds to avoid mismanagement and misappropriations.

Source: GNA

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