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Opinions of Tuesday, 24 September 2002

Columnist: Asare, Stephen Kweku

Where Is The Audit Report On The DCEs?

Immediately the new government of the NPP took over power from the NDC administration, Ghanaians were told that the previous government had created a lot of mess. In the case the District Assemblies, the District Chief Executives were accused of having misappropriated huge sums of monies. Consequently, auditors were therefore dispatched to the various district assemblies to audit them. So we were all waiting, but maybe we have to wait timelessly.

Surprisingly, the findings have become the bona fide properties of the Local Government Minister and his deputy who refers to them (the findings) only when it suits them to chastise the previous government of the NDC for perceived misappropriations.

I want to state that the entire nation deserves to know what went wrong and the authenticity of the job done by the auditors so we can draw useful lessons from them.

Besides, the said money belongs to the people and we cannot afford to waste yet another sum of money to investigate alleged wrong doings only for the results to remain in mystery. Otherwise, it is easy to suspect that such moves are only to satisfy the whims and caprices of some individuals in authority. An act which could also have been motivated by the desire to find ?job for the boys?.

On a more serious note, I plead that since the audit task forces have finished their work, their findings must be made public. Those DCEs found to have stolen the people?s monies must be made to face the music whilst those freed from the charges be made to enjoy their benefits to be paid to them by the government.

Secondly, I am at a loss as to why the DCEs were not made to pay for their official vehicles so that they would use them while they are not in office. I have seen District Chief Executives who served their nation diligently but who are now doing their rounds on foot. It is important to note that they are no longer ordinary citizens. They have a lot of experiences to share with their successors and are still points of cohesion within their districts.

In another sense, during the course of their services some have stepped on some toes and have therefore become targets for attack. So the question is this; are we not setting a precedent that would make those who dedicate their lives to nation serving always regret they did?

I suggest amendments be made in parliament so that DCEs, like the ministers of state, will also pay for their cars as their end of service benefit after leaving office.


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