General News of Thu, 6 Sep 201819

Auditor General exposed over GH¢7.6m cars

The Auditor-General has embarked on what could be described as face-saving campaign by denying any wrongdoing in the purchase of vehicles for the Audit Service.

As indicated previously, the Audit Service used part of its 2017 budgetary allocations, as well as funds from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), to purchase a number of vehicles for the Service.

The Service has conceded that purchases were well above the approval limits of the Auditor-General, Daniel Yaw Domelevo, his deputies and the Entity Tender Committee of the Audit Service.

It, however, claims that the approval for the purchase was concurrently given by the Central Tender Review Board (CTRB) as required by the Public Procurement Authority Act.

DAILY GUIDE checks indicate that no CTRB was in place at the time the vehicles, including a Toyota Land Cruiser V8 valued at over half a million Ghana cedis, were procured.

Documents available to DAILY GUIDE clearly show that the Entity Tender Committee of the Audit Service spearheaded the approval of the procurement processes.

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Denial

A statement issued by the Acting Head of Public Relations Unit of the Service blatantly denied the publication, saying they did nothing wrong in the purchase of the vehicles.

The statement claimed the Audit Service followed all the right processes, including receiving concurrent approval from the Central Tender Review Board (CTRB) for the purchases.

Interestingly, the statement claimed the purchases were made from the 2018 budgetary allocations of the Audit Service with no mention of the USAID funds.

Source of Funding

However, documents available to DAILY GUIDE indicate that the vehicles were purchased from the 2017 budgetary allocation to the Audit Service.

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The Audit Service wrote to the Office of the President in 2017 seeking approval for the Service to purchase the vehicles.

This was after the Service had advertised and evaluated the purchases in September 2017 in two newspapers.

“The Ghana Audit Service intends to apply part of its 2017 budgetary allocations to payments under the contract for the supply of vehicles for which an invitation for tender was issued in the Ghanaian Times on 4th September 2017 and Daily Graphic simultaneously (copies attached),” the documents indicate.

The invitation for tender indicates five medium cross-country vehicles, one heavy-duty cross-country vehicle and 21 pickups which were to be purchased from the 2017 budgetary allocations of the Audit Service.

At the end of the tender process, the contract for the supply of the vehicles was awarded to Toyota Ghana Limited.

They included 21 Toyota IMV Hilux 4WD Deluxe at a cost of GH¢3,831,252.60.

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The company also supplied the Audit Service with five Toyota Land Cruiser Prado KD Leathers at a cost of GH¢1,640,061 for use by his deputies and a Toyota Land Cruiser 200 VX at the cost of GH¢529,805 for use by the Auditor-General.

USAID Funds

Available documents show that the Audit Service purchased a number of vehicles from funds from USAID.

Per the document, the Audit Service purchased four medium cross country vehicles from the USAID Funds which were supplied by Toyota Ghana Limited.

The four vehicles cost GH¢1,028,341.20, which was also above the threshold.

“The Ghana Audit Service intends to apply funds from USAID to payments under the contract for the supply of vehicles for which an invitation for tender was issued in the Ghanaian Times on the 4th September 2017 and Daily Graphic simultaneously (copies attached),” the documents indicate.

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It’s therefore surprising for the Audit Service to claim that the vehicles were purchased from its 2018 budgetary allocations when available documents from the Service clearly indicate that the vehicles were purchased from its 2017 budgetary allocations and funds from USAID.

Approval

DAILY GUIDE also has documents which indicate that the Entity Tender Committee of the Audit Service met on February 13, 2018, to approve the “Tender Evaluation Report for vehicles.”

Per the document, “Madam Roberta Asiamah-Appiah welcomed the house and said the Office of the President had granted the Audit Service approval to buy vehicles. She also stated that fortunately for the Audit Service, advertisement and evaluation was done last year (2017) which will help facilitate the process of purchasing the vehicles.”

The document went on to indicate 21 Toyota IMV Hilux 4WD Deluxe at a cost of GH¢3,831,252.60, five Toyota Land Cruiser Prado KD Leathers at a cost of GH¢1,640,061 and a Toyota Land Cruiser 200 VX at the cost of GH¢529,805 as the summary of lowest evaluated tender.

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