The Auditor General, Biraro R. Obadiah, has this Monday, April 29, 2019 presented to Parliament the audit report of the year ended 30 June 2018. In line with article 166 of the Constitution of the Republic Of Rwanda of 2003 revised in 2015, the report was tabled before both chamber of parliament.
The report presents the AG’s findings and respective recommendations on matters which were identified during the execution of Financial, Compliance, Performance, IT and Special audits conducted during the period from May 2018 to 20 April 2019.
The current year’s audits covered 173 public entities and projects, which comprise of 142 budget agencies and projects, 5 Government Business Enterprises and 26 District Hospitals. This represents 86.6% coverage as compared to 86.4% coverage in the previous year.
The focus for the audits was again on high risk entities and those that implement programs that impact on the lives of Rwanda citizens. Those include 5 Government Business Entreprises (GBEs) :REG Holding, EUCL, EDCL, RSSB and WASAC and 9 boards.
“Generally, the current status of opinion results for GBEs and Boards presents a huge opportunity for improvement as are in charge of executing programs of national importance. As such, there is need for combined efforts and attention to GBEs and Boards to ensure improvement of Public Financial Management aimed at improving service delivery to the citizens,” the AG told parliament.
The audits identified cross cutting findings of irregular expenditure in form of unsupported expenditure, partially supported expenditure, wasteful expenditure, unauthorised expenditure and funds diverted or fraudulently utilised amounting to Frw 5,681,814,498.
These figures show that there has been 68% decline of irregular expenditure from Frw 17.6 billion (2016) to Frw 5.68 billion (2018). “This is indicative of an improvement in our PFM systems and controls when it comes to recording and accounting for expenditure” the Auditor General noted.
Other cross cutting findings identified during audits include cases of delayed and abandoned contracts, stalled projects, continuing cases of idle assets, failure to recover advance payment and performance securities as well as non-compliance with taxation laws.
The Auditor General also noted in his report that the trend on the status of implementation of his recommendations over the past 5 years shows that the rate is still low.
The average rate of implementation stood at 49% in 2018, representing a slight improvement of 5% from the previous year 2017.
“There is need for concerted efforts to implement Auditor General’s recommendations by the audited entities to improve Public Financial Management (PFM)” the AG notes in the report.