MMDAs Still Violating Financial Regulations
The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament has expressed grave concern about the continued disregard for public financial regulations by Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs).
Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, Chairman of the Committee, noted that in spite of recommendations by the Auditor-General, and admonitions by the Committee, the Assemblies keep repeating the mistakes and violations, leading to the loss of huge sums of money to the State.
He said sanctions would therefore have to be applied against offending public officials to serve as deterrent to others.
He was speaking at the opening of a four-day public sitting of the Committee in Kumasi to consider reports of the Auditor-General on the accounts of District Assemblies for the years 2010, 2011 and 2012.
It would look at the management and utilization of District Assemblies' Common Fund (DACF) and other Statutory Funds for the period.
MMDAs from Ashanti and the Brong Ahafo Regions mentioned in the Auditor-General as having been involved in acts of financial malfeasance would be appearing to answer questions.
Mr Agyeman-Manu said the Auditor-General had over the years recommended appropriate sanctions against erring officials, but these had largely been left unimplemented, resulting in widespread corruption.
He said the 2012 Report sent to the Speaker of Parliament by the Auditor-General clearly demonstrated his frustration and disappointment at the flagrant breaches of the financial rules and regulations.
He urged officers of the Assemblies to accept change and to do the right things to reduce malfeasance and corruption at the local level.
Samuel Sarpong, Ashanti Regional Minister, cautioned public officials against corrupt practices and outright stealing of public funds.
They should act with maximum care at all times to ensure value for money to minimize audit queries and do everything possible to avoid past mistakes and omissions.
Alhaji Ibrahim Dey Abubakari, Ranking Member of the Committee, said the MMDAs had persisted in acts of malfeasance because of the lack of appropriate sanctions, and this was what the Committee would go to every length to change.