The Auditor General’s Report has revealed how an officer from Chadiza Town Council was paid over K95,000 as imprest to enable him to inspect projects, attend meetings and workshops.
And the Report further revealed that sitting allowances amounting to K23,000 were paid to various council officers for attending District Tender Committee meetings, but the funds were not recovered.
In the Report the Accounts of Local Authorities for the financial year ended December 31, 2015, 2016 and 2017, the Auditor General revealed that there were no activity reports to prove that the Chadiza Town Council officer carried out the activities he claimed he would use the K95,164 on.
“During the period under review, three imprests in amounts totaling K95,164 were issued to an officer to enable him inspect projects and attend meetings and workshops. However, there were no activity reports availed for audit, making it not possible to ascertain whether the activities were undertaken,” the Report disclosed.
And it revealed that sitting allowances amounting to K23,543 were paid to various council officers for attending District Tender Committee meetings.
“Contrary to Cabinet Office Circular No. 9 of 2004, sitting allowances in amounts totalling K23,543 were paid to various Council officers for attending District Tender Committee meetings. As at 31st March, 2019, the funds had not been recovered from the officers,” the report narrated.
It further revealed that the Council diverted over K2 million Equalization funds to pay salaries.
“According to the Local Government (Amendment) Act No. 12 of 2014, a Council shall use at least 20 per cent of funds received by the Council, in any financial year, to finance capital projects. During the period under review, the Council received Equalization funds in amounts totalling K16,214,415 out of which K3,242,883 being 20 per cent was meant for capital projects. However, out of K3,242,883 meant for capital projects, a total amount of K2,013,172 was applied on salaries,” the Report revealed.
Meanwhile, the Report observed how 10 council officers were paid settling-in allowances and commutation amounting to over K45,00 without deducting Pay as You Earn (PAYE).
“Contrary to the Income Tax Act Chapter 323 of the laws of Zambia, 10 officers were paid settling-in allowances and commutation of leave days in amounts totalling K45,803 without deducting Pay as You Earn (PAYE),” it narrated.
The Auditor General’s Report also disclosed that the Council spent over K37,000 on repairing two vehicles that were involved in accidents and failed to avail police and standing accidents board reports.
“Local Authorities Financial Regulation No. 154 states that the Treasurer shall take out insurance cover against losses, damages, risks and liabilities which the Council may incur and shall regularly review such cover in consultation with the head of department. However, as at 31st March, 2019, the Council had not insured its various assets comprising plant and buildings, office equipment and motor vehicles. As a result of the failure to insure assets, the Council spent K37,340 on repairing two motor vehicles that were involved in road traffic accidents. Further, documents such as Police and Standing Accidents Board reports were not availed for audit,” read the Report.