Friday, February 08, 2008
By Times Reporter
THE report from the office of the Auditor-General has revealed that irregularities in the management of public funds had continued with the worst being that of misapplication of funds to the tune of K42,885,707,241 billion. Auditor-General’s office public relations officer, Ellen Chikale, said in a statement that the audit report for the financial year ended December 31, 2006 was out and revealed that irregularities in the management of public funds had continued with the worst being the misapplication of K42,885,707,241.
The report also revealed that K22,053,976,602 was unaccounted for while other irregularities included unretired imprest of K18,585,086,881, unaccounted for stores of K14,992,700,535, unsupported payments of K12,647,491,376, delayed banking of K3,976,260,363, over-payments of K1,756,258,571 and misappropriation of K85,714,710.
The report also revealed unconstitutional expenditure of K8, 642,049, 204 in respect of 23 heads of expenditure which would have required approval by Parliament as provided for under article 117(5) of the Republican Constitution.
Ms Chikale said the report, which was presented to Parliament on February 5, 2008 was submitted to the President on December 31, 2007.
“This years report has revealed that irregularities in the management of public funds have continued with the worst irregularity being that of misapplication of funds to the tune of K42,885,707,241,” read the statement.
Ms Chikale said as for the revenue component, the financial year under review revealed that there was a net deficit in the actual revenue collected (K6,990,018,969,806) against the estimated amount of K8,200,555,356,347 by K1,210,536,386,541.
She said revenue collection comprised tax and non-revenue. Tax revenue was revenue from taxes such as income, mineral royalties, customs and excise and value added tax among others. Non-tax revenue was revenue from fees and fines such as traffic collections and ground rent.
Ms Chikale said some irregularities in the collection and accounting for revenue in the audit report included tax arrears of K2.9 billion, tax refer-to-drawer cheques of K2.5 billion and unaccounted for non-tax revenue of K4.5 billion.
She said out of the tax arrears of K2.9 billion, a sample of K1.7 billion was picked for circularisation and that 97 per cent of the amount was disputed by institutions said to be owing the Zambia Revenue Authority.