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FG orders audit of States, LGAs COVID-19 accounts

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AbdulGafar Alabelewe, Kaduna

Auditor-General of the Federation Anthony Ayine has directed state and local government Auditors-General to audit the receipts and expenditures in respect of COVID-19 pandemic for transparency and accountability.

According to him, auditing the state and local government COVID-19 incomes and expenditures will ensure the pandemic is not used as conduit pipes by scrupulous government officials to siphon public funds.

Addressing the 25th Annual Conference of Auditors-General or local governments in Nigeria on Tuesday in Kaduna, Ayine said auditors need to be abreast with various standards and related guidelines to enable them relevant.

According to him: “Auditors should be proactive to avoid post mortem adverse consequences. To ensure accountability of public funds, the office of the Auditor-General for the Federation, within weeks of the lockdown occasioned by Covid-19, held a virtual meeting with its management on the audit of funds related to tackling the pandemic.

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“Audit Teams was set-up and have since commenced an audit of Covid-19 receipts and expenditures of the Federal Government.

“It will be advisable that you replicate the same measures in your states.”

Chairman, Conference of Auditors-General for local governments and area councils, Mr. Abel Esievo, lamented the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their work, “since the last meeting in Abuja a lot has happened in the field of auditing.

“Most prominent of which is the impact of COVID-19 on our job performance and the assistance and encouragement given to the audit family nationwide by Nigerian Governors Forum and the Works Bank. The challenges of the pandemic made it difficult to access auditees and their records,” he said.

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