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Accountant-General Limits Number Of MDA Accounts
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Grace Adzroe
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The Controller and Accountant-General's Department has initiated moves to limit the number of bank accounts each ministry, department and agency can operate.

The move is as a result of the deployment of the Ghana Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS).

The Controller and Accountant-General, Ms Grace Adzroe, who stated this when she appeared before the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament yesterday, said bank accounts were closed as soon as they were identified as being dormant.

She was answering a query by the committee as to why no periodic reviews were carried out to rationalise the number of bank accounts of MDAs for efficient management and control.

The anomaly was captured in the report of the Auditor-General on the public accounts of Ghana for the year ending December 31, 2012.

Under the Financial Administration Regulation 14 (2), the Controller and Accountant-General is required to ensure that all bank accounts opened and designated as Consolidated Fund account at the Bank of Ghana or its agents shall form part of the Consolidated Fund.

In that respect, the CAGD is expected to conduct periodic review and rationalise the number of government bank accounts under its control.

Ms Adzroe said as of December 2014, 1,171, accounts operated by MDAs had been closed, adding that they were found to be dormant.

The committee also sought to find out from Ms Adzroe why goods and services and assets expenditure of 17 MDAs, totalling GH¢ 2,155,845, 054 exceeded their revised budget of GH¢ 921, 408,338 by GH¢ 234,436,716, representing an adverse variance of 134 per cent.

The MDAs that exceeded their budget in relation to goods and services and assets included the National Commission on Civic Education, Ministry of Youth and Sports, Electoral Commission, Ministry of Chieftain and Culture and the Ministry of Finance.

Ms Adzroe stated that the apparent budget overrun was as a result of re-allocation of votes to the MDAs from central votes such as contingency and reserve votes during budget implementation.

The original budgets, she added, were inadvertently not adjusted accordingly.

Meanwhile most government ministries, departments and agencies exceeded their budgetary allocations by more than 300 per cent in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013, running into billions of cedis.

This was contained in the Auditor-General’s report for the four years mentioned and which was the subject of discussion at the sitting of the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament yesterday.

For example, in 2012, the Electoral Commission, spent GH¢180 million instead of GHC 20 million allocated to it.

At the Ministry of Youth and Sports, GH¢253 million was spent instead of the GH 46 million allocated to it.

The Ministry of Energy and Petroleum spent GHC746 million instead of GH¢270 million.

Government machinery, one of the agencies mentioned, spent GH¢158 million instead of the GH¢94.7 allocated to it.

Members of the committee were visbly upset about the development and said a cap needed to be put on government spending.
Source: Daily Graphic

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