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Business News of Friday, 7 April 2017


Venture Capital makes $3.6m wrongful payment to SIC Financial Services, two entities — Report

The management of the Venture Capital Trust Fund has made the wrongful payment of US$3.6 million to SIC Financial Services Limited (SIC-FSL) and two entities, the Auditor-General’s 2015 Report has revealed.

The Auditor-General's 2015 Audit Report to Parliament said the two entities that also benefitted from the wrongful payment were representatives of the Bethany Church.

The money was for the purchase of a property at North Ridge in Accra.
The report did not give further details on when the wrongful payment was made, neither did it give the names of the two representatives of the church.

“We recommended to management to ensure that the fund recovers US$3,649,134 from the illegal recipients of the money,” the report, signed by the outgone Auditor-General, Mr Richard Q. Quartey, and addressed to the Speaker of Parliament, noted.

Further to that revelation, the report stated that due to non-compliance with proper loan agreements, 51 per cent of files examined for loans totalling GH¢914,654 granted did not have adequate information on borrowers.

It further stated that contrary to Section 15 (5 and 6) of the Venture Capital Trust Fund Act, 2004, Act 680, 34 per cent of loan files reviewed did not have documents to prove that loans totalling GH¢1,479,402 were approved.

“We advised management to ensure that all files are updated by the Investment Department,” the report said.

Unsigned loans

The Auditor-General’s Report further noted that contrary to best practice, the audit observed that agreements on loans totalling GH¢1,305,967 were not signed and dated.

It, accordingly, recommended to management to ensure that all loan agreements were properly signed and dated.

It also recommended that files of borrowers should contain adequate information that could help trace them.


According to the report, “contrary to Section 13 of the Venture Capital Trust Fund Act, 2004 (Act 680), we observed that an amount of GH¢114,360 was paid as gratuity without the sector minister’s approval”.

“We, therefore, recommended that for the amount to stand charged to the fund’s account, an approval should be sought from the minister or the amount be recovered to chest,” it added.

Failure to account for imprest

The report further noted that six members of staff, including board trustee members, who were granted a total imprest of GH¢282,389 failed to retire the imprest on the due date, although the programme had been completed.

“We advised management to ensure the timely retirement of imprest and institute sanctions to be applied to defaulters,” it  noted.

The report

The report, which has been presented to the Speaker of Parliament, in accordance with Article 187(2) of the 1992 Constitution, highlights the audit of the accounts of public boards, corporations and other statutory institutions for the period ended 31st December, 2015.

It highlights the significant findings arising from the audit of the financial operations of public boards, corporations and other statutory institutions in accordance with Section 13 of the Audit Service Act of 2000 (Act 584).
It includes details of financial errors and irregularities arising out of the breakdown of internal controls and provides recommendations, where possible, to rectify the weaknesses identified in the financial control systems.