Auditor-General identifies political interference in local project awards

The Performance of Audit Report on Capital Projects funded through District Development Facilities in 30 Districts Assemblies compiled by the Auditor-General has identified political interference in project awards.

The report on the website of the Audit Service found out that in some cases, projects were not initiated in accordance with the National Development Planning Commission Guidelines, but were based on political decisions at the local level rather than followed procedure.

“The District Chief Executives and Members of Parliament under the guise of directives influence the type of projects, selection of contractors and siting of projects,” it said.

“We found markets; KVIPs and some schools sited in areas far from the communities and not being used thereby defeating the purpose for which they were built”.

The report, which was submitted to parliament, said the projects were termed priority projects and imposed on the communities thereby externally interfering to undermine the process.

“There was the inclusion of tenders who did not purchase tender documents as it was in Bibiani and evaluation of Tenders who did not meet preliminary qualification criteria set by the Assemblies to have won and awarded contracts as in the case of Awutu Senya District in the award of contract for a pavilion and the maternity ward,” it noted.

It said the guidelines stipulated that districts undertook development projects by involving the various communities to ensure that projects undertaken were based on need rather than partisan political considerations.

The report said, “Session 2(1a) of the National Development Planning (System) Act 1994 (Act 480), a District Planning Authority established under the Local Government Act, 1993 (Act 462), initiate and prepare district development plans and settlement structure plans in the manner prescribed by the Commission and ensure that the plans are prepared with the full participation of the local community”.

Source: GNA

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