N$160 000 Vanishes into Thin Air

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By Staff Reporter

WINDHOEK

Money amounting to N$159 333 could not be accounted for on the Salaries Vote for staff of the Kunene Regional Council, as revealed in audit reports compiled by the Auditor-General covering the period 2005 to 2007.

Auditors also depicted numerous irregularities among them payments without support documentation as well as not following tender procedures, according to sources.

“They (auditors) never divulged much on the missing funds. They just indicated that they have to review everything and forward them to the Auditor-General before the final report is released,” indicated one source that requested anonymity for fear of victimization.

The source indicated that during the de-briefing meeting with the staffers, irregularities were being read out with recommendations.

It was stated by the auditors that the regional council has no proper filing system in place as well as management control.

“They also found that the accountant is doing much and thus recommended that a chief accountant be appointed as soon as possible to avoid overload,” said the source.

Auditors recommended that most minutes of management should always be signed, a fixed assets register be updated and bank reconciliation be up to date with cashbooks among other vital recommendations.

Meanwhile, reliable sources indicate that despite the auditors remaining mute on the total funds that could not be accounted for during the de-briefing, citing the official channel of communication, apart from revealing a relatively small amount of money that was pointed out to have been misused for personal gain when a fraudulent illegal food account was opened at OK Grocer, they say some of the irregularities are an open secret and can amount to hundreds of thousands.

New Era is in possession of a letter penned by an employee of the regional council to management confessing to be behind the OK Grocer food account and thus indicating remorse and to be held responsible for the misused account by paying back.

The total figure of the misused food account amounts to N$723 and New Era is reliably informed that a political ‘big muscle’ was behind the startup of the OK Grocer account.

Sources allege that the regional governor’s official house was renovated to the tune of more than N$400 000 without following tender procedures and not even certified by a qualified quantity surveyor.

They also say that other irregularities include awarding a security tender to Somaeb Security Services to man the constituency offices without following the right channels.

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