The NEWS (Monrovia)

11 December 2012

Liberia: GAC Audit Reports Under Scrutiny

Audit reports submitted to the Legislature and Executive Branches of Government by the General Auditing Commission (GAC) is said to be undergoing rigorous scrutiny by the Ministry of Justice.

Latest reports filtering into our offices indicate that the Liberian Government through the Ministry of Justice has constituted a team of lawyers to review audit reports from GAC.

There are indications that the audit reports have indicated several local government officials of corruption and other financial malpractices in the expenditure of their county development and social development funds.

The GAC, after its thorough investigation in the various counties, submitted its findings to the Executive with recommendations for the prosecution of those implicated in the reports.

Deputy Information Minister for Public Affairs Isaac Jackson confirmed the review of the audit reports by the Justice Ministry.

He said in order to effectively and professionally tackle corruption cases, a special team of lawyers from the Justice Ministry is reviewing the GAC audit reports from the various counties.

Minister Jackson said the team has already completed the review and visitation at project sites in Grand Bassa, Margibi and Montserrado Counties, while investigation continues in Bomi, Sinoe, Nimba, and Rivercess counties.

He said officials implicated in the findings will be indicted for prosecution as a way of strengthening transparency.

He alluded that government has already obtained conviction in the case, Republic of Liberia vs. Albert Bropleh despite appeal to the Supreme Court.

Minister Jackson spoke Friday at a roundtable discussion on the prospects and challenges in the fight against corruption organized by the LACC as part of activities marking this year's official celebration of the International Anti-Corruption Day which was officially celebrated yesterday.

Also speaking at the roundtable discussion, Deputy Justice Minister for Administration and Public Safety, Freddie Taylor, said the Justice Ministry has received the GAC audit reports and sent independent investigators to seek further facts, confirmation and clarity where there are doubts.

"Our investigators are looking at the various projects that were partly and fully completed along with assessors from the Finance and Public works Ministries to give a professional determination of the project costs and value", Minister Taylor noted.

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