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Parliament to debate K236 billion report—Pac

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The Public Accounts Committee (Pac) of Parliament has said it will soon finalise its scrutiny of the K236 billion audit query after which a report will be presented for debate during the next meeting of Parliament.

At a recent launch of the National Security Policy, President Peter Mutharika called on Pac and the Anti- Corruption Bureau (ACB) to get to the bottom of the audit query which was initially known to concern 13 files.

Presently, the number of files that the Auditor General has submitted to ACB for possible investigation has risen to 64.

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In an interview yesterday, Pac Vice- Chairperson, Kamlepo Kalua, said the committee would be looking into the matter after this week and prepare a report for both Parliament and public consumption.

“We are looking at Treasury minutes which include those involving funds which were unaccounted for in local councils. After that, we should be able to finalise our scrutiny of the K236 billion files.

“As you are aware, the President [Peter Mutharika] also talked about this and we want to assure Malawians that we will be through with this issue during our term of office. Everything is under control. We are working with different stakeholders on the same,” Kalua said.

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He added that issues raised in an audit query that found that some projects and funds could not be accounted for in some local councils are being addressed.

Kalua said some councils that failed to account for funds in stalled projects have resuscitated them while those that will be found to have failed to provide proper explanations will be dealt with using existing administrative guidelines.

Treasury spokesperson, David Sado, confirmed in an interview that some local councils have started addressing issues that were raised in the audit query.

“There was a special committee that was instituted to look into the matter. It involved officials from our ministry and the Ministry of Local Government. There is progress in addressing the issues raised. For instance, some projects that stalled at the time of the audit have resumed,” Sado said.

He added: “Others have been able to provide documents to support how certain funds were utilised. Those councils that will fail to provide convincing explanations after the period that they were given will be summoned and proper action will be taken on them.”

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