The 2021 Auditor-General’s report revealed the country lost over Ghc1bn through irregularities at Ministries, Departments and Agencies.
Approximately GH¢1,080,913,824 was lost, a colossal sum but a reduction on the 2020 figure of GHc 2,053,176,449.
The over Ghc1bn lost to irregularities fell broadly into a few categories – tax irregularities, contract irregularities, cash irregularities, payment irregularities, rent irregularities and total indebtedness/loans/advances due to the state.
The irregularities unearthed occurred as “either losses that had been incurred by the State through the impropriety or lack of probity in the actions and decisions of public officers or on the other hand, the savings that could have been made, if public officials and Institutions had duly observed the public financial management framework put in place to guide their conduct and also safeguard national assets and resources”.
The over Ghc1bn lost to irregularities fell broadly into a few categories – tax irregularities, contract irregulaties, cash irregularities, payment irregularities, rent irregularities and total indebtedness/loans/advances due to the state.
Approximately 91.5% of the total losses, 989,026,225, were attributable to tax irregularities.
This figure is mainly attributed to some GH¢402,804572 due from 28 Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) who defaulted in paying to GRA their rescheduled debt between January 2021 to December 2021 and a further GH¢249,800,802.00 in Outstanding duties and taxes on Oil lifted that 17 OMCs between January 2021 and December 2021, did not pay on 29,995,530 litres of oil they lifted to the Ghana Revenue Authority, Customs Division.
This represented an increase from the 2020 tax irregularities figure of GHC694,386,436.
Total contract irregularities of GH¢1,559,424 was reported with, GH¢1,188,816.00 of the figure being interest paid on delayed payments for contract certificates raised.
This represented a significant drop from the GHC171,364,190 of contract irregularities recorded in the 2020 report.
Also, a total amount of GH¢45,763,607 which represented 4.23 percent of the total irregularities was lost to cash irregularities.
Cash irregularities range include infractions such as unapproved disbursements, unpresented payment vouchers, unaccounted revenue, unsupported payment vouchers, funds to bank not credited, non-lodgement of public funds, misapplication of funds and unretired imprest.
The remaining irregularities are Payroll irregularities, which amounted to GH¢5,583,498.00 and which included some unearned salaries totalling GH¢1,501,740.00 paid to 146 officers of 47 Institutions under Ministry of Health.
The rest include rent irregularity of GH¢7,710,925.00 which included GH¢600,013.00 due from government workers from 13 Health Institutions who defaulted in the payment of rent and US$993,600.00 due government from 48 occupants of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) flats.
Total Indebtedness/Loans/Advances due the state amounting to GH¢30,758,576 represented 2.8 per cent of the total irregularities and Stores and procurement irregularities noted during the period amounting to GH¢511,569.00.
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