Zanzibar’s Controller and Auditor General has been accused by some members of the House of Representatives of concealing grand misuse of public funds and instead his reports dwell on petty cases.
Debating the annual budget speech of the Ministry of State President's Office, Public Service and Good Governance, some representatives said the CAG’s practice was contrary tovalues and principles of good governance.
The representative of Magomeni constituency, Salmin Awadhi Salmin, said CAG reports have been concentrating on small cases, whereas major incidents of misuse of public funds remained uncovered. This he said is contrary to civil service ethics and principles of good governance.
Three select committees of the House of Representatives were tasked with investigating the misuse of public money and abuse of power, and as a result high level of misuse of funds was uncovered, he stated.
“CAG has not dealt with major extravagance in his report and instead he focuses on small culprits every year,” said Salmin, qualifying this outlook as regrettable.
The Representative for Chakechake Ali Omar Sheikh (CUF), said the CAG had failed to report on massive corruption practices in Zanzibar.
The Representative for Chonga constituency, Abdallah Juma Abdallah noted that practice in the Zanzibar CAG’s office should change and be brought under the House of Representatives instead of performing audit functions as an arm of the state administration.
He said that time has come for the body to be responsible to the House of Representatives because it would make it more free in performing its duties rather than being under the Executive, which is audited by the CAG annually.
Furthermore representative Abdallah said that in order to strengthen the principle of good governance, the time has come for judges in Zanzibar to work on the ethics of their work in order to build trust with the public in responding to acts of crime.
He said that many criminal suspects, especially in Mifungu area have been arrested but despite the evidence they are released under controversial circumstances “yet the government wants the public to obey the law on the premise of good governance.”
Special Seats representative Panya Ali Abdallah said that office of the Auditor General has been working and strives to provide a keen report but no action taken is against the perpetrators of acts of embezzlement in Zanzibar.
Panya said that workers in the CAG office work in a difficult situation as they lack working tools and earn little amounts of money despite working in this sensitive office in Zanzibar.
Earlier when tabling the estimates, Minister Haji Omar Kheir said the annual report 2009/20010 has already been completed and was expected to released sometimes this year.
In addition he said the government continues its program review on the basis of Audit Act No. 11 of 2003 to strengthen communication and training auditors to equip them so that they can operate using computers.
esdtimates amounting to the use of 1.8 billion shillings for recurrent expenditure for the Zanzibar CAG office..