PAC/PEC of National Assembly meet Ministries’ reps on audit queries

By Muhammad Bah
The Public Account and Public Enterprise committee of the parliament
on Tuesday 21st April met representatives of various ministries at thenational assembly to get them to answer to queries raised in the
report of the auditor general.
The subject matter was queries. Not much progress was made as many of
the civil servants indicated that they had very short notice, even as
late as the very morning of the sitting to face the committee.
Momodou Lamin Sanneh, the Secretary General of
NATCOM who assumed office after the Audit report of the period under
review said he knew nothing about the 2012 queries regarding NATCOM,
adding that by that time he was not in office and had only prepared
himself for the 2013 Audit report. He then asked deputies to give him
time to go back and prepare responses to that.
Another institution was the Ministry of Defense and The Armed Forces
represented by the Permanent Secretary who also said that he was not
prepared to give responses to the Auditor’s queries and asked for
referral to a later date. He also suggested that defence issues are
supposed to be held in camera. This idea was rejected by Hon. Alhajie
Sillah of Banjul North saying this has nothing do with Guns, uniforms
etc. but infrastructure and lack of payment vouchers.
Dr. Henry Carol, representing the Solicitor General Ministry of
Justice said he was called just that morning to represent his ministry
and he is not aware of anything concerning audit reports.
The Majority leader Fabakary T. Jatta took the floor to inform
officials representing their institutions that they must come with a
backup team to help them give adequate responses.
The meeting was then re-scheduled for Monday 27 April 2015 to give
them time to prepare themselves to answer queries raised on the audit.
Representatives of local government authorities (councils) will appear
before the joint committee today Wednesday 22 April to answer to audit
queries.