Many procurement activities of MHMS took place before necessary authorisation and approval: OAG report


IT was uncovered that many procurement activities took place at the Ministry of Health (MHMS) before the necessary authorisations and approvals were signed, this shows lack of accountability.

This was found in the audit report on procurement relating to COVID-19 Disaster relief fund by the Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) released by Office of the Auditor General.

The report says in the sample tested, OAG identified transactions that did not comply with financial requirements in the tendering and awarding for contracts including not implementing the required competitive quotation/tendering process without an appropriate waiver, awarding contracts to businesses which did not have a valid or current business registration and failing to maintain adequate supporting documentation for transactions.

“Many procurement activities took place before the necessary authorisations and approvals were signed, which meant internal controls were not complied with, which creates a lack of accountability.

“The identification of these deficiencies in a relatively small sample indicates that internal controls cannot be relied upon to ensure that procurement will achieve best value for money or eliminate the possibility of conflict of interest and misuse or misappropriation of public funds,” OAG report says.

The report adds that Office of the Auditor General also found that the Ministry was unable to provide records associated with procurement transactions, particularly in relation to the decision-making process around what to procure, how to procure and who to procure it from, but also basic transactional documentation such as purchase requisitions, delivery dockets and evaluations reports. Compliance checklists which are used to ensure that all controls have been implemented, were also not available for all transactions.

The report further adds excessive use of imprest accounts by the Ministry was convenient for rapid purchasing but meant that key internal controls to ensure value for money and integrity were not fully effective.

Discover more from Theislandsun

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading