General News of Mon, 5 Feb 201811
Public service audit is based on evidence, not trust – Auditor General
The Auditor General, Daniel Domelevo has cautioned all Municipal and District Assemblies (MDAs) and government agencies to be mindful of how they use public funds.
According to him, most MDAs do not maintain proper records and that creates avenue for people to seal and misuse public funds.
Expressing concern about how some MDAs neglect their responsibility of protecting the public coffers at a press briefing in Accra, Mr. Domelevo maintained that, “Anyone who is keeping or managing public funds has a statutory duty to keep the records. We cannot find it, is not an excuse.”
He said, all MDAs who think they are doing their work diligently should keep records as financial management is about evidence and not based on trust.
“I can’t just tell you that your twenty thousand you gave me, I spent it in your interest, trust me, I must provide you with evidence that this is how I used it,” he said.
To strengthen Ghana’s internal auditing and ensure public accounts are clean, the Auditor General said his outfit has recommended to government to review the internal audit.
He urged internal auditors to be independent of the “spending officers”, which he believes will make people take internal audit a bit more serious as “Internal Auditors are professionally abused and bullied”.
Mr. Domelevo also warned auditors against embezzling public funds because the Audit Service is fully ready to support government with evidence to prosecute anyone who deliberately presents paid debt to the Finance Ministry for repayment saying, “That is fraudulent and I am urging the Attorney General and EOCO to pick that up and my outfit will support them with evidence in court” he said.
The Auditor General was speaking at a press briefing on the findings of the audit report on MDAs in Accra on Monday.