You are here: HomeNews2009 06 19Article 163964

General News of Friday, 19 June 2009

Source: GNA

Auditor-General's Report on Ghana@50 Secretariat

Accra, June 19, GNA - The Auditor-General's report on the accounts of the Ghana@50 Secretariat, indicated that payment vouchers and supporting documents were not properly arranged for easy cross-reference.

It said; "The Secretariat did not maintain complete records on receipts of revenue and payments for expenditures on all its transactions."

The report, signed by Mr Edward Dua Agyeman, the Auditor-General, said; "The accounting and administrative staff who were engaged by the Secretariat were on contract basis, and for that matter most of them were not available at the time of the audit to readily explain unclear accounting and administrative issues to the audit team." It said; "Management did not provide cash books for the seven bank accounts maintained by the Secretariat."

The report that had been sent to the Speaker of Parliament, said: "There was no stock register of value books to control the receipts and issue of value books. Management only made available to the audit team copies of the invoice and waybill from Optimum Design and Publishing Services dated 21-07-2006, which did not provide the serial numbers of the 150 value books the waybill was supposed to cover."

The Secretariat also failed to maintain subsidiary records such as store ledgers, contracts registers for proper management of contracts and Vote Service Ledgers (VSL) to control receipt and expenditure of funds from the Treasury.

The report said contrary to Article 179(2) and (8) of the 1992 Constitution, the National Planning Committee and the Office of the President failed to prepare and submit budget estimates in respect of the activities of the Secretariat for approval by Parliament.

It said in the absence of this it could not establish the basis for the allocation of two separate sums of US$20 million and US$11.8 million by Parliament to the Secretariat for its activities.

According to the report, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning did not exercise budgetary control over the activities of the Secretariat in accordance with the Financial Administration Regulations, 2004 (LI 1802) before, during and after the approval of a total of US$31.8 million to the Secretariat, subsequently, the expenditure of the Secretariat exceeded the amount approved by Parliament.

On the excess of expenditure over amount allocated, the report disclosed that the National Planning Committee incurred total expenditure of GH71.70 million cedis against approved allocation of GH29.31 million cedis to implement programmes and activities towards the celebrations and the African Union Conference held in2007 adding that this amount exceeded the sum of GH29.31 allocated by Parliament to the Secretariat by 144.62 per cent.

On the issues of cars, the audit report said the Ghana@50 Secretariat bought 300 vehicles at the cost of 14,606,727.60 Ghana cedis for the celebration of Ghana's Golden Jubilee, some of which were sold out to individuals and institutions while few others were at the Presidency.

According to the report on the accounts of the Secretariat from May 2006 to December 2008, the breakdown of the vehicles, were as follows; 35 VW Passat; 35 Chrysler; 25 Zonda Bus and 40 Jaguar.

The Report said the rest of the cars were; 25 Mercedes MCV 260; 40 Peugeot 607 Model; 50 BMW and 50 Mercedes Benz S350.

The Auditor-General said in the report that the former Chief of Staff, (Mr Kwadjo Mpiani) wrote to him that 24 of the 35 VW Passat vehicles were sold to the public and that monies realised from the sale of the vehicles were lodged at the Bank of Ghana.

"The remaining 11 vehicles are with the Office of the President." The report said 27 of the 35 Chrysler vehicles have been handed over to the State Protocol.

"The remaining eight are with the Office of the President." The report said all the 25 Zonda Buses have been sold to the Ministry of Education, Science and Sports while the 35 Jaguars were sold back to Fairllop International Limited and the remaining five were still parked at the company's yard.

The Report said on 8 October 2008, management wrote to Fairllop International Limited demanding payment for the vehicle sales but the audit team did not sight evidence of the payment.

It recommended that the Secretariat should reconcile its records with Fairllop International Limited and ensure that the cost of the 35 vehicles totalling GH1, 008, 000 was recovered from the company without further delay. 19 June 09