NAO faulted for ‘flouting procedures’ over K6.2bn Covid-19 funds report

Scores of directors of finance in selected councils across the country have faulted the National Audit Office (NAO) for “flouting procedures” in the manner it handled an audit into the K6.2 billion Covid-19 funds.

President Lazarus Chakwera had instituted an audit on Covid-19 funds across councils in the country, and a report by the Auditor General shows that only 14 councils are without a query and are not appearing in the report.

Among others, a senior government official, well-versed with standard public audit processes say an audit begins with an engagement letter from NAO to concerned ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) and then an entry meeting is conducted before the audit starts.

Acting Auditor General Thomas Makiwa

According to them, after the audit an exit meeting is done and from an exit briefing they expect the client (MDAs) to provide comments on the observations made.

But some directors of finance in councils say that was not the case despite acting Auditor General Thomas Makiwa, who appeared before the Public Accounts Committee on Monday, saying all clusters were properly audited.

Ellen Kayira, chairperson of Local Government Finance Managers Network, noted that most of the faulted councils were not accorded a chance to respond to observations.

She alleged that councils that “do not appear in the report” were given an opportunity to respond to observations.

“These councils were given a management letter and had exit meetings after which they were cleared. Some of the procedures were not followed, especially what happens after an audit has been instituted. In most councils after the audit was executed, there were no exit meetings and those who were custodians of documents were not even given the right to be heard,” Kayira told Nation.

According to her, they have submitted their concern to the Malawi Local Government Association (MALGA) whose president, Wild Ndipo, insisted the councils “managed the Covid-19 funds better.”

Said Ndipo: “The suspected abused funds may be five percent which can be cleared if they [councils] are given a chance to explain.”

Meanwhile, all concerned councils and officials have been summoned to appear before PAC from next week and to explain to the Ministry of Finance within 14 days from Monday.

The committee’s letter reads in part: “You are hereby also asked to ensure that all officers mentioned in the report under your institution should accompany you to the hearing.

“In readiness for your appearance before the committee, you are requested to submit bound copies of your written responses to the audit query by Friday April 30, 2021”.

Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :

Sharing is caring!

Follow us in Twitter
20 Comments
newest
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
mtete
mtete
10 days ago

We are at war with merciless looters of public resources and in situations like these Marshall Law takes precedence. The Audit Procedures being recommended by the socalled experts can wait because as far as most of us are concerned, these are just delaying tactics by those who want to derail the rubble clearing process, obviously because they are part of the scum.
These so-called experts are the very same people who are stalling Reforms by throwing spanners in the wheels of progress just to frustrate to frustrate Tonse Alliance government.

President Chisokonezo
10 days ago

NAO is not independent. It is influenced politically, administratively etc. How can you call NAO audit independent. It even doesn’t have an auditor general for years now. It is a very useless entity.

Concerned citizen
10 days ago

Fraud related issues need the element of surprise and are extremely different from routine audits. I would assume high ranking officers would appreciate this aspect of audit. Please confirm the competence of our senior public officers.

Janet banda
Janet banda
10 days ago

Rules of natural justice not followed you don’t biult a case in court

Goods on Chawanga
Goods on Chawanga
10 days ago

In fact we need more of these unannounced or impromptu audits. They reveal more..

Yetremiah Gomani
Yetremiah Gomani
10 days ago

Kodi mesa ngati munthu sanabe ali ndi ufulu kukafotokoza ku court? Chomwe akupangira philosophy ndi chani nkhani zili ku Bwalo

Kondwani Yakimu
Kondwani Yakimu
10 days ago

Koma civil servants mulibe manyazi. Palinso chotsutsa mu report muja?

Maxwell Gam
Maxwell Gam
10 days ago

Nonsense. These are institutions which were given all the time by the HE to prepare reports of how the funds were used and now they want to claim they didn’t have time to rxplain? Typical of someone trying to cook information. What explanation would they give for someone who sign for nights for holding a meeting at the base station? Totally rubbish

Erik P
Erik P
10 days ago
Reply to  Maxwell Gam

Yep exactly. Any organisation that can be audited should have paperwork in place all the time. That they don’t means they failed the audit because their.processes are in place. When I did auditing people got 24hr notice only.

Moses Katchola
Moses Katchola
10 days ago

Please civil servants you want to cling to these useless bureaucratic processes because you know they give you an escape route. You have been caught pants down. No escape this time

The Patriot
The Patriot
11 days ago

I fear NAO is now compromised. Too much political interference. The issue needed some independent auditors who would not shield any politically connected persons. What NAO did is primarily expose only those areas they wanted to expose for political purposes. Soon the positions will be filled with their own MCP folks with allegiance to the incumbent. The whole stuff is smelling bad. We have to deal with corruption and public funds theft and then deal again with a compromised NAO. It’s a shame. And MCP is using any dirty trick up the sleeves to do worse things than DPP. The… Read more »

Last edited 11 days ago by The Patriot
shares
Read previous post:
CCJP challenges CSOs, media and citizens to lead the fight against corruption

Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) has challenged the civil society, the media and other stakeholders to assume a...

Close