Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Gairo DED breaks into tears during LAAC grilling

GAIRO District Executive Director (DED) Agnes Mkandya broke down into tears yesterday following intensive grilling by members of the Parliamentary Local Authorities’ Accounts Committee (LAAC) on embezzlement of funds in the district council. Ms Mkandya found herself in hot soup when responding to questions from parliamentarians and started crying, wiping her eyes with a handkerchief, prompting the Chairperson of the committee, Mr Vedasto Ngombale (Kilwa North-CUF), to calm her down. It all started when Special Seats MP Ms Leah Komanya (CCM) started grilling the DED on the alleged misuse of funds in the district council to which Ms Mkandya admitted misuse, explaining further that she had sacked nine heads of departments due to the rip-off. As the DED continued sobbing, the Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee tasked the district council’s Head of Internal Audit to shed light on the misappropriation. However, he said they could not answer all questions since they had just been handed over to the office in a short period. Unsatisfied by the response, Mr Ngombale asked the Morogoro Regional Administrative Secretary, Dr John Ndunguru, to respond to the allegations but he, too, was quick to explain that many of officials in the district were new in office and thus not aware of earlier undertakings. Earlier, Ms Komanya had pointed out what she described as massive embezzlement in Gairo District Council, accusing officials of siphoning revenues collected in the local government authority through the use of ‘carbon slips.’ In response, the DED said the use of ‘carbon slips’ to cheat the authority on revenues had been detected where one of officials was nabbed, noting further that the authority was now working to install Electronic Fiscal Devices (EFDs) to collect revenues.

Gairo District Executive Director (DED) Agnes Mkandya

Ms Mkandya explained further that the district council had contracted the Tanzania Telecommunications Company Limited (TTCL) to connect Gairo District Council to the national fibre optic to link the electronic revenue collectors. In another development, the parliamentary committee directed the Gairo District Council to dish in the next six months all funds that should have been granted for youth and women economic empowerment funds during the financial year 2013/2014. During the financial year under review, the local authority was supposed to dish out 13.4m/- and 14.4m/- for women and youth empowerment funds, respectively as well as 24m/- that was meant for villages and streets. ''We direct that the funds in question should be paid in the next six months, we as well urge the President’s Office (Regional Administration and Local Governments) to see into it that a total of 254m/- owed to Gairo by Kilosa District council is paid during the current financial year,” he instructed. Speaking earlier, the Deputy Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee, Mr Abdallah Chikota (Nanyamba-CCM), warned officials at the district council against cheating, explaining that the committee summoned them due to shortcomings on their financial records. Meanwhile, Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has directed the Controller and Auditor General (CAG) and the government assets administrator to investigate the 12.5bn/- spent on constructing the Dodoma Regional Commissioner's Office. The order was issued here yesterday by PAC Sitting Chairman Mr Japheth Hasunga, shortly after chairing a meeting with the regional secretariat. Mr Hasunga (Vwawa-CCM) said the committee wants to verify the value for money on the structure whose construction is ongoing. "CAG and the state property administrator should investigate if the structure and furniture match with the money already spent," he said. The committee also tasked the administrator to undertake a special inspection on state properties especially cars (working, defected, or sold). It has called on the regional accounting officer to actively manage the accounts department to meet international standards during the preparation of financial statements to avoid flaws in audit reports. "The accounting officer must from now on submit a written report explaining how 665.3m/- was obtained and spent before the end of the day tomorrow," the chairman ordered.

SOURCE: Daily news.

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