The 2011 Auditor-General's report revealed that the bank reconciliations, comparing balances held at the transit bank accounts with those maintained in the cash books were not performed by the National Revenue Authority (NRA), and consequently auditors were unable to confirm the existence of the key control which would provide assurance that all revenue received had been banked and deposited in the Consolidated Fund.
According to the Deputy Auditor-General, Tamba Momoh, auditors were unable to obtain sufficient appropriate audit evidences that the domestic revenue disclosed in the Public Accounts was free from material misstatement.
He said the treasury transit accounts used by the NRA to collect money on behalf of government and the money from those accounts should have been transferred to the CRS at close of business on 31st December2011, but this was not done, adding that consequently government domestic revenue for the year 2011 as presented in the Public Accounts did not include all monies collected and was therefore understated.
He explained that auditors were also unable to ascertain the total amounts not transferred and could not therefore estimate the total potential misstated, although closing balances from some of the transit bank statements presented for audit inspection showed an amount of Le17 billion in these statements.
Momoh added that despite repeated requests, securitized receipt books were not provided during the audit of the Domestic Tax Department and Customs and Excise Department, while 256 declarations (with associated supporting documents) out of 311 declarations requested were not provided to the audit team during the period of the audit.
Responding to queries, Deputy Accountant-General, Richard Williams said only Le.5.1 billion was recorded in their account and not the said Le17 billion.
According to the Director of Finance at the NRA, Abdulai Conteh, the said amount was in the transit accounts and that when monies are deposited within twenty-four hours, they should be deposited into the Consolidated Fund.
He said he two departments are yet to be harmonised, but that mechanisms have now been put in place to do so, adding that there was no space to store volumes of declaration forms.
The Committee recommended that the Office of the Auditor-General and NRA should reconcile the accounts and get back to members as soon as possible with a report, and urged the Auditors to tighten the screws to prevent government funds being misappropriated.