GAC Seeks Presidential Sanction
-Plans Audit Summit For Officials
Liberia’s Auditor General (GAC), Yusador Gaye is pursuing President George Weah to sanction GAC’S effort to host audit awareness retreat for government officials in June later this year.
When approved, the GAC said, it intends to use the retreat to exercise participants through various audit processes and procedures to enhance cooperation as well as promote accountability in the public sector.
Madam Gaye made the appeal recently in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County during her presentation on the GAC’s activities during the Cabinet Retreat last Friday. She noted that the GAC, over the years has noticed that some officials have been trying to cleverly escape audits with the perception that being audited automatically suggests indictment for financial malpractice.
Madam Gaye, however, dispelled such perception and said, the commission’s duty is to assist government in protecting and managing its resources and at the same time provide the necessary framework on how the State should operate in spending government’s finances; hence an educative retreat was necessary, she declared.
According to her, out of unnecessary fear, some officials would hide sensitive documents that could be subject to audit, thus making the work of the GAC difficult.“The GAC has the constitutional and statutory mandate to conduct audits and enhance transparency and we are not there to witch hunt.
“Conducting an audit is a tedious task that requires maximum support from the auditees,” she added.
Madam Gaye urged her colleagues in government and partnering integrity institutions to honestly join hands in fighting graft so that the government’s development priorities can be attained for the benefit of the Liberian people.
Speaking further, the GAC boss underlined capacity building for staff as a basic challenge confronting the institution.
In her presentation, Madam Gaye disclosed that the GAC commissioned and completed several audits and officially submitted to the Public Accounts Committee of the Legislature 50 percent of such audit reports for appropriate action.
At the Legislature, the Public Accounts Committee is clothed with the mandate to review audit reports and recommend findings to the Executive for subsequent action.
In June 2005, an Act was passed by the National Legislature to amend Chapter 53.2 of the Executive Law of 1972 which granted the General Auditing Commission the status of an autonomous agency of Government amendable to the National Legislature.
The 2005 amendment makes Chapter 53 of the Executive Law comply with Article 89 of the 1986 Liberian Constitution, which named GAC as an autonomous Commission.
Meanwhile, the Chair of the Cabinet retreat, Pres. Weah noted the proposal and promised to study it and make a determination as soon as possible.