Parliament’s powerful Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has told the Auditor General Stevenson Kamphasa to deal with the latest audits of government as fears for more plunder of government money at Capital Hill, the seat of government continue.
PAC chairman Alekeni Menyani said the Auditor General is four years behind but the parliamentary committee wants the Auditor General to tackle the latest audits.
“This will help us know the latest plunder of public resources and this is in connection with the K236 billion plunder of public resources during the administrations of Bingu wa Mutharika and Joyce Banda,” said Menyani.
He said this will also help the committee use money prudently, saying parliament is facing huge financial problems due to the current economic atmosphere facing the nation making the meeting of parliamentary committees a miracle.
“This is why we want to address the current situations,” he said.
But Kamphasa said he will have to consult with other stakeholders on the issue.
He said his office was working to catch up with the audits to ensure they are current.
“Our job is to ensure that things are in order. There are times we might think those which are five years old are not relevant, but there are certain issues that controlling officers continue to repeat,” said Kamphasa.
He said there is need to make sure controlling officers are “taken to task”.
Meanwhile, The Nation newspaper in its editorial comment on Wednesday also added its voice to the matter, saying “where we see the problem is where the audits seem to be far removed from the present.”
Titled “it is time audits added value, curbed fraud”, the daily newspaper said in the editorial comment that in the wake of revelations of abuse of public funds exposed in September 2013 – cashgate – at the pace the audits are moving, Malawians have reasons to be afraid.
“By the time audits for the current financial year are released, more funds will have been abused and some of the controlling officers will have left office. There will be simply no one to take to task,” reads the editorial.
It said the official government external auditor should prioritises “some hotspots” that are prone to abuse such as foreign missions.
“The need for prudent management of public finances cannot be overemphasised. Malawi is already facing the pinch of withdrawn direct budget support owing to abuse of public funds.
“Foreign direct investment (FDI) also tends to elude countries where public funds are abused and corruption is the order of the day. Domestic tax payers as well los confidence in their government,” reads the comment.
The paper calls for efficiency and improvement in the management of the public audit “if they are to add value and curb fraud. There are simply no excuses.”Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :