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More than US$20,8m unaccounted for under Minister July Moyo

Local Government Minister July Moyo has failed to avail supporting documents for variances amounting to ZWL 2 184 555 690 (US$20 805 292 on the official rate at the time of concluding the Auditor-General’s audit on November 10, 2021) disclosed in the Appropriation Account , Nehanda Radio can reveal.

According to a report of the Auditor-General Mildred Chiri for the financial year ended December 31, 2020 on Appropriation Accounts, Finance and Revenue Statements and Fund Accounts, the Ministry failed to account for the variances discovered after alignment of its all expenses.

“The Ministry’s Appropriation Account had total expenditure of ZWL6 301 070 001 while the total expenditure from the Sub-PMG Account of ZWL5 828 539 210 and Employment Costs as per Salary Service Bureau schedule of ZWL360 612 086 amounted to ZWL6 189 151 296 leaving a variance of ZWL111 918 705 (US$1 066 667) unreconciled,” read the report.

Chiri, further noted that the compensation for employees figure of ZWL354 699 074 included in the Appropriation Account “differed with the SSB schedule figure of $360 612 086 giving a variance of ZWL5 913 012 (US$57 143).”

The Ministry could not provide the breakdown of the variances at the time of concluding the Auditor-General’s audit on November 10, 2021.

She, therefore, “could not place reliance on the amount of expenditure disclosed in the accounts in the absence of a reconciliation showing the makeup of the variance.

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“This was contrary to Treasury Minute B/1/88 which provides that monthly reconciliations should be performed between the SSB figures and the PFMS figures.”

Chiri also noted that a balance of US$19 047 619 disclosed in the Appropriation Account was not supported by release letters from the Treasury.

“I noted that of the ZWL3 587 918 744 UR transfers disclosed in the Appropriation Account, only ZWL1 521 194 771 was supported by release letters from Treasury and the remaining balance of ZWL2 066 723 973 (US$19 047 619) could not be supported.

“This was contrary to the provisions of Section 35 6(a) of the Public Finance Management Act [Chapter 22:19] which requires the Accounting Officer to keep or cause to be kept proper records of account,” she said.

The Auditor-General said failure to perform monthly reconciliations may result in erroneous payments.

“Thus, financial statements may be misstated.

“The Ministry should ensure that all expenditure is properly accounted for and reconcile any expenditure variances on a monthly basis. Monthly reconciliations should be performed to ensure proper accountability for the Ministry’s expenditure.” Nehanda Radio