Source: Auditor general vindicated | The Financial Gazette July 27, 2017
THREE months after a receipt book went missing, the Ministry of Industry and Commerce flighted an advertisement this week in a daily newspaper, highlighting lack of concern over potential prejudice to the State.
“The Ministry of Industry and Commerce would like to inform employers and members of the public that a short receipt book, serial number 005901 005950 and a date stamp belonging to the Standards Development Fund went missing on 26th May, 2017. Employers and the public are advised not to accept receipts from the mentioned range,” the advert, published on Tuesday, said.
The advert vindicated auditor general Midred Chiri’s latest report on the fund.
Chiri (pictured) said the Standards Development Fund was not “being fully accountable for its assets thereby exposing them to misuse and theft”.
The AG noted that there was evidence that work of subordinates at the ministry was not being supervised, a situation which led to three vehicles worth $128 700 being transferred from Harare to regional offices in Mutare and Bulawayo without any evidence of the transfer of assets by means of an issue of vouchers.
Chiri noted: “The fund was operating without accounting officer’s Instructions contrary to the provisions of Treasury Instruction 0706 which stipulates that the accounting officer should issue detailed instructions governing the conduct of financial business and control of public monies and property for which they are responsible. As a result there were inconsistencies in the treatment of transactions.”
This, she said, had compromised the reliability of the fund’s financial statements because basic “accounting principles may be ignored in the absence of explicit instructions”.