General News of 2014-07-22

Korle Bu audit reveals massive financial malfeasance

The Korle Bu Teaching Hospital (KBTH) was in 2013 deprived of Ghc140, 776.30 meant for development projects, according to an interim forensic audit report done on the pharmacy department of the hospital.

The audit, which covered the period between January 2012 and December 2013, was in response to allegations and reports of misappropriation of funds at Korle Bu, Ghana’s biggest referral hospital.

A draft report of the audit, of which has copy states that, “revenue per Turnover Report in Persol [the accounting software] stood at Ghc7, 343,524.37 as against revenue banked and used in preparing financial statements of Ghc7, 202,748.07…a difference of Ghc140, 776.30”.

Auditors’ review of transactions at the 24 Hour Pharmacy of the hospital for instance, showed that only Ghc65, 600 out of a total of Ghc194, 535 purchases made at the pharmacy was accounted for.

“Our examination of daily sales summary showed direct refunds being made at the 24HR unit for medicines purchased by clients totaling Ghc77, 191.61 and Ghc53, 383.29 in 2012 and 2013 respectively, without prior approval or involvement of the Accountant," the auditors noted in the summary of finding and recommendation.

Accountants also failed to enter the transaction into the appropriate books hence a discrepancy of Ghc400, 663.52, Ghc96, 638.86 in 2012 and 2013 respectively, according to the interim audit report.

The 29-point summary of findings pointed to many instances of dereliction of duty and neglect of procedure, remarking in one occasion that “there are no operational manuals more so, none of the staff [at the pharmacy] has ever received any training on manual handling”.

The Pharmacy Department of the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital as at noon Tuesday was closed as staff protests a directive to three of their colleagues to proceed on compulsory leave.

The directive, contained in a letter signed by Board Chairman Eddie Annan, named the three persons- Stephen Corquaye, Raymond Tetteh and Eric Kyei - all union leaders and asked them to take a vacation to allow for the forensic audit to be conducted at the department.

The three had earlier accused the acting CEO; Rev Albert Botchwey, the board chairman, Eddy Annan and the entire management of the hospital of stalling activities at the pharmacies including taking over the procurement of pharmaceutical products.

Staff of the hospital are also said to be gearing up to force the acting CEO of the Hospital, Rev. Albert Okpoti Botchwey out. They claim Rev. Botwe has refused to hand over the office of CEO to the Head of Medical Affairs, Dr Samuel Asiamah, despite being directed to do so by former Health Minister Sherry Ayitey.

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