General News of Mon, 10 Sep 20189
Irregularities at MDAs cost nation close to GHC1bn - Auditor General
The Auditor General has uncovered almost a billion cedis loss to the state through financial irregularities perpetrated by some top officials and management at the country’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
Details of these irregularities are contained in the 2017 Auditor General’s report and show how millions of Ghana cedis in internally generated funds failed to make it to state coffers.
The report also details how a total of GH¢103 million have so far been lost to the state because assorted items were taken out of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) customs bonded warehouses without paying duties and taxes.
Details of report
At the Education Ministry, for instance, the Auditor-General accuses former Deputy Minister of Education, Elizabeth Amoah-Tetteh of illegally holding on her official vehicle.
The Auditor General observed that that three officers between 2014 and 2017 who separated from the Education Ministry took along with them their official vehicles – two of the vehicles were returned except for one Honda Accord in the possession of Madam Amoah- Tetteh.
The Auditor-General has directed the Education Ministry to recover the vehicle.
At the Health Ministry, the Auditor-General’s report found that two Budget Management Centres (BMCs) and seven Health Institutions as at 30 June 2016 collected maintenance fees totalling GH¢476,000 but paid only GH¢212,000 to the state leaving more than GH¢200,000 outstanding. This happened at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital.
The Auditor-General has asked the management of the hospital to pay the difference to the state, directing that failure to do so would lead to a process to surcharge management of the premier hospital.
At the Ministry of Agriculture the report found that many of the people given state purchased agricultural machinery on hire purchase have failed to make payments totaling more than GH¢1.6 million cedis.
One of the biggest financial losses to the state was discovered at the GRA. The Auditor-General found that total of GH¢103 million have so far been lost to the state because assorted items were taken out of GRA customs bonded warehouses without paying duties and taxes.
The auditor general has recommended that the unpaid duty is recovered together with its associated penalties by the Commissioner-General.
He also recommends that the resident customs officers are sanctioned to serve as a deterrent to others.