Every Dalasi Counts Let’s Follow the Money

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It is high time that the government of the day put in place mechanisms to follow our monies where ever they might be. The state is losing millions by way of unretired Impresst and government workers loaning themselves and not paying off the loans.
More and more people who had served the state in various capacities and at various levels are said to have gone away with millions of dalasi from the coffers of the state. This trend is only draining the state and impoverishing the country more and more. And until something is done our dear land shall never progress.
The government of the day have to do everything they can within their powers to recover some of these monies and plough them back into our productive sectors. If government can just sit and watch a few citizens take from what belong to all and nothing comes out of it, then there is a problem.
What do we call such acts, can it be corruption or looting? In the Daily News Wednesday edition 56; it was reported that D39, 924,346.91 is sitting in private pockets instead of in the Central bank of Gambia. These are Imprest given to civil servant for purposes, and the officials handling these Imprest should retire them after all expenses.
Sometimes last year too, the Daily News ran a story where D26.4m of imprest was sitting with people who fail to retire the monies back to government. It seems that, that figure has now gone up and now the new findings is that we have unretired Imprest stand at the tune of D39.9 million. Again we are reporting in our news page monies owed to state to the tune of D9Million.
How come can we have our honourable cabinet ministers take loans of this magnitude and still not paid? If a whole Vice President can take a loan to the tune of D1million and not even pay one quarter of that loan what do you expect from junior cabinet ministers.
It is very unfortunate that some previous cabinet ministers can take such loans and after two years out of office , they have not made any attempt to repay those loans taken. The said scheme was a revolving funds of D8million, and for only a few cabinet colleagues to borrow up D7.9million and that was the end of the scheme is unfortunate.
As a government we must have financial discipline and that the current government should put in place policies and schemes to recovery such monies that are sitting in private bank accounts of pockets. And that they too must be mindful of such practices as it will one day come to light.
For unretired Imprest; the law is very clear about that; Section 28(11)of the Financial Regulations states, ‘An imprest shall be retired on or before the last day of the financial year or on such earlier date as specified by the Permanent Secretary, when authorizing the imprest’.
All cash flow should be presented to the Auditor General for Financial Regulations before end of each year for outstanding imprest. It seems no regard was given to that section of the laws.

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