The appearance of officials of Assemblies before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of parliament is an indication that something is not being done right.
He said the role of the internal audit committees at the various Assemblies was to ensure that the Public Financial Management (PFM) Act was strictly complied with and, therefore, appearing before PAC for all the wrong reasons was worrying.
Dr Oduro Osae, the Director-General of the Internal Audit Agency (IAA), who made the statement, charged members of the audit committees to rise above partisanship and work to protect the public purse.
He was speaking at the inauguration of six-member internal audit committees for 27 municipalities and district Assemblies in the Eastern Region.
Dr Oduro Osae noted that all the infractions that brought the assembly officials to the PAC were well spelt out in the laws and with the operations of the internal audit committees, “appearing before PAC should be for the good reasons and not to the extent of police involvement.”
He said among the responsibilities of the Internal audit committee was to check the financial systems at the various Assemblies to ensure full compliance with the Public financial management laws.
“In fact, if the internal audit committees are working well, we should not have external auditors coming to spend weeks at the expense of the Assemblies and if the internal audit is strong external auditors can just do sampling audit,” he noted.
He said to get the internal audit committees working to standards, the IAA was working out modalities where members of the internal audit committees would be cited alongside scheduled officers for financial infractions.
The IAA is also working it out with the local government ministry to make the internal audit reports a DPAT indicator for the Assemblies.
He asked the members of the respective committees to work with their District Chief Executives to be able to submit timely audit reports, adding that some Assemblies were in areas of 2021 reports.
Mr Seth Acheampong, the Eastern Regional Minister, on his part, said the government was bent on protecting the public purse and, therefore, require diligence and transparency from duty bearers at the Assemblies.