ABU DHABI // More than Dh300 million has been recovered for the state treasury after auditors discovered that the money had been fraudulently distributed to the private sector. The State Audit Institution (SAI) said it had uncovered unethical and illegal practices and violations by federal government employees, causing the treasury huge losses, SAI President Dr Hareb al Amimi told the Ittihad newspaper.
Dr Amimi's office said the SAI had sent reports on the cases to the Federal National Council (FNC). Further information on the recovery of the Dh300m (US$81m) is unlikely to be issued until the FNC has reviewed the reports detailing how the money was improperly spent. The work of the SAI is in step with the federal Government's efforts to curb corruption. As the external auditing authority, it has a mandate to supervise and monitor all federal government departments, and companies that are at least 25 per cent owned by the Government, such as the telecoms companies Etisalat and du.
"SAI is an independent body which reports on its work directly to the Federal National Council, and it plays an important governance and oversight role for the federal government," Dr Amimi told Ittihad. "The government campaign reinforces the key role of SAI in improving public sector governance." Dr Amimi said the SAI would introduce performance auditing to examine the management of federal government organisations and programmes, and would not restrict itself to improving its financial auditing. Management practices would be examined to determine whether or not they promoted improvement, and were carried out efficiently, effectively and economically, he added.
SAI monitors only federal funds and its functions have remained confined to checking official financial records. Monitoring the revenues and expenditures of all government institutes and ensuring state funds are managed properly is the responsibility of the Financial Auditing Authority, which was established in 2004. * The National