Saturday, 15 June

Covid-19 audit: Three funding sources missing in report – Domelevo

Ken Ofori-Atta, Minister of Finance

The former Auditor General, Mr Daniel Domelevo, has questioned the work of the current Auditor General concerning the audit of the Covid-19 expenditure.

The Auditor General presented a report on the government of Ghana's Covid-19 expenditure for the period of March 2020 to June 2022 and issued on 30th December 2022.

The Auditor General on the publication of the Special Audit Report of the Government of Ghana Covid-19 expenditure confirmed total resources mobilised for the Covid-19 response over the period of March 2020 to June 2022 at GH¢21,844,189,185.24.

But speaking to the report, the ousted Auditor General said there were nine sources of funding for the management of the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to him, only six of the sources of funding for the Covid expenditure were audited.

He said categorically that nothing has been heard about the remaining three sources of funding.

He revealed that the audit is ''silent on the three other sources of funding''.

Mr Domelevo queried if it is the case that the government did not allow the current Auditor General to audit the remaining three sources of funding.

According to Mr Domelevo, it will be worrying if the Auditor General was not allowed to audit the remaining sources of funding for the management of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Mr Domelevo raised these queries about the Covid-19 audit report when he spoke on The Citizens Show on Accra100.5FM on Wednesday, May 31, 2023.

He noted that the Auditor General has the mandate to audit all the Covid expenditure. 

Reacting to the Supreme Court ruling that Akufo-Addo's 167-day forced leave directive to him was 'unconstitutional', Mr Domelevo said while in office, he was mindful of the food he ate, the water he drank and who he even spoke with because he felt he was operating in an enemy territory.

He disclosed “My board chairman was the one representing Osafo-Maafo in court. Just imagine the Auditor General surcharges someone and his board chairman is coaching the accused in court and this board chairman will leave court and come sit in the office to take decisions.”

“So in my mind, I felt I was working in an enemy territory, so I was watchful of my food, drink, even in the office.

“I felt unhappy in office and was afraid I could make mistakes if care was not taken. Although the supreme court ruling has delayed but I feel leaving office game me respite,” he added.

It will be recalled that the Director of Communications at the presidency, Eugene Arhin, in a letter dated July 2020 directed Nr Domelevo, to proceed on annual leave.

This sparked widespread controversy and resistance from a cross section of Ghanaians and anti-graft campaigners who raised concerns over the erosion of institutional independence and the protection of constitutional rights.

The order for Mr Domelevo to proceed on leave came after the Senior Minister then, Yaw Osafo-Maafo and four other officials from the Ministry of Finance sued Mr. Domelevo to clear their names in relation to what was said to be breaches of the Public Procurement Act (PPA) that resulted in their payment of US$1 million to a private UK firm, Kroll and Associates.

Mr. Osafo- Maafo had said he was resorting to the courts because “the evidence available shows clearly that the Auditor-General erred in law and professional procedures in the exercise of his powers regarding his audit on payments to Kroll and Associates Limited.”

Source: Mensah