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Act on Auditor General’s financial reports

By The Standard | Published Fri, December 8th 2017 at 00:00, Updated December 7th 2017 at 22:11 GMT +3

Despite what many interpreted as executive intimidation of Auditor General Edward Ouko at a State function at State House Nairobi last year and the follow-up threat of censorship by the Leader of Majority in parliament Aden Duale early this year, the Auditor General continues to write audit reports on financial misappropriations that are alarming.

Seemingly, public funds are being misused by top Government officials who do not subscribe to the principle of accountability. Almost every other report that has been tabled by the Auditor General raises questions on deals that appear not to be above board, but this has not encouraged accountability as subsequent reports show.

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In his latest report, the Auditor General poses questions on why the Ministry of Interior irregularly opened a bank account in which Sh8.6 billion was deposited without the National Treasury’s authority.

In the past three years, the report says, the Office of the President spent Sh2.7 billion on unverified expenditure, yet because such expenditure is exempt from scrutiny, there is very little he can do.

Under such circumstances, the principle of accountability loses meaning when the office that should be spearheading efforts against misuse of public funds is itself at the centre of misuse.

The Auditor General’s report reads like a thriller heist. One wonders, where did all the money go to?  These reports, and indeed many before it, should not be left to gather dust in offices.

Full investigations where full disclosure is made offers the only remedy. At the end of the day, it is the people’s money we are talking about.