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General News of Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Source: citinewsroom.com

Auditor-General chases 112 firms, individuals for GHC511m misappropriated cash

The Auditor-General has surcharged some 112 individuals and institutions whose actions caused the State to lose huge sums of monies within the 2017 and 2018 financial years.

A total of GHC511, 211,239.04 is expected to be realized from the surcharges and disallowance certificates the Auditor-General issued to the individuals and institutions indicted.

“During the 2017 and 2018 financial years, and in the reports issued to Parliament and respective MDAs, due to poor cash management and procurement irregularities, 112 certificates of disallowance and surcharge, were issued against individuals, organisations and institutions who committed financial infractions and were levied for refund of a total amount of GH¢511,211,239.04,” a special audit report released by the Auditor-General stated.

This was contained in the Special Audit report of the Auditor-General on disallowance and surcharge as at November 30, 2018.
Ghana lost GHC40 billion in between 2003 and 2014

Ghana continues to lose millions of cedis in financial irregularities and embezzlement committed by the various Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).

A study conducted by pressure group, Occupy Ghana on reports of the Auditor General revealed that the Ghana between 2003 and 2014 lost over GHC40 billion due to “irregularities” arising from MDAs.

GHC5.4 billion wrongfully paid

A 2016 audit of the finances of the various MDAs also revealed that some state agencies engaged in unlawful monetary practices costing the nation some GHC5.4 billion between 2014-2017.

Auditor-General retrieves GHC67m from surcharges

The Auditor General’s Department says it has retrieved about GHC67 million arising from monies paid back to the State from institutions who committed financial infractions between 2013 and November 2018.

The Auditor-General in the report said the amount was as a result of follow-up on recommendations in its previous reports.

“Our follow-up on the status of implementation of recommendations in the Auditor-General’s reports for the period 1 January 2013 to 31 December 2017, resulted in the recovery of a total sum of GH¢64,559,121.86 from individuals, institutions and companies who committed financial infractions.”

“Similarly, five individuals, institutions and companies who failed to account for a total amount of GH¢3,018,379.72 owed the state for various financial infractions committed prior to the issue of surcharge certificate refunded a total amount of GH¢2,578,398.00 between July 2017 and November 2018, into the Consolidated Fund…to bring the total recoveries to GH¢67,137,517.86,” the report added.

Give me prosecutorial powers

The Auditor-General in February 2018, said he had applied to the Attorney General to grant him powers to prosecute persons indicted in the Auditor General’s report.

Mr. Domelevo said “…if a fiat is given by the Attorney General to Audit Service just like it has been given to the police and others to prosecute…which I have actually applied for, you will see me in action.”

But so many months after the request, it is unclear whether his appeal has been granted or not.