Business News of Thursday, 21 March 2013
Source: Daily Guide
Investigation conducted by CITY & BUSINESS GUIDE has uncovered startling evidence of how some state agencies and officials persistently loot the public purse.
Details are emerging in the 2011 Auditor General’s Report about how the consolidated fund is continuously milked by those who have access to it in fashion that suggests plunder.
In a series of mind-blowing articles, the paper is set to lead a campaign to stop acts that are painting a gloomy picture of the economy.
In page 62 of the report, the Auditor-General noted with concern certain factors that prevented the government from keeping an accurate financial position.
Some of the areas where the Auditor-General expressed reservation are direct debits unsupported with relevant documentations as well as poor record keeping on the Government of Ghana (GoG) Equity Investments.
Discrepancies between MDAs Actual Expenditure and the Expenditure schedule disclosed in the Public Account also came up strongly.
Others include failure to deduct withholding tax on payment to 15 companies, non-disclosure of GoG carried interest an absence of systems for accountings the returns thereof.
Finally, the Auditor-General also expressed reservation about multiple payments of salaries and pensions, uncertainty in the Recovery of GoG Loans as well as receivables from 9 foreign missions unaccounted for.
On the financial analysis Budget Out-turns for 2011 (in millions), GH¢12, 114, 16 (budget), GH¢ 13,747.06 (actual) GH¢1,179.99 (variance) and GH¢10,563.82 (actual) were recorded as total expenditure.
GH¢1,734.19 (budget), GH¢ 4,736.24 (actual), GH¢ 189.16 (variance) and GH¢3,887.82 (actual) were recorded as surplus (deficit).
The report said “despite the increase in total revenue of 35 percent in 2011 due to the inflow of GH¢ 254 million annual budget funding amount from the oil revenue and significant increase in revenue from petroleum levies, airport taxes, company and personal taxes and mineral royalties, GoG recorded an actual revenue of GH¢9,010.82 million as against budgeted revenue of GH¢ 10,379.97 million registering a shortfall of GH¢ 1,369.15 million.”
According to the Auditor-General, government expenditure rose by GH¢ 1,179.99 million when compared to the annual budget of GH¢12,114.16 million and said the expenditure could be attributed to the migration of some institutions onto the Single Spine Salary Structure, errors in the consolidation of MDAs actual expenditures, wrongful payment of salaries and judgement debt expenditures.
The report said actual total expenditure exceeded actual total revenue, revealing a higher deficit of GH¢4,736.24 million as against the projected deficit of GH¢1,734.19 million.