ELLEN CHIKALE, Ottawa, Canada
THE Public Accounts Committee (PAC) says the Office of the Auditor General remains an important institution in the safeguarding of public resources in the nation.
And the public accounts committee has further declared that the independence of the Auditor General’s Office must be looked into as a matter of urgency.
Speaking after visiting the Office of the Auditor General in Canada, Committee Chairperson Mr Howard Kunda said whereas it was good that the independence of the Office was provided for in the constitution it was unfortunate that it had not been operationalised.
Mr Kunda said the current situation where the Auditor General depends on the Executive for funding and recruitment was against the tenets of good corporate governance as well as the Mexico Declaration on SAI independence.
The Mexico Declaration provides for both financial and administrative independence as well as security of tenure and independence of Heads of Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs).
The PAC chairperson noted that the Auditor General must be given leverage to decide on what they should audit, when they should do so and not be hindered by the budget funding or the timing of its releases.