- Serame says purpose of special audits is to ensure accountability
- Ministries of Transport and of Agriculture are top priorities
- DCEC says govt loses P600m per year to corruption
The Ministry of Transport and Public Works followed by the Ministry of Agriculture are top priorities in a drive by the government to investigate and clamp down on wasteful departments of state, The Botswana Gazette has established.
Presenting the 2023/24 Budget on Monday this week, the Minister of Finance, Peggy Serame, said after successfully carrying out a special audit of the Department of Tertiary Education Financing over a 10-year period, the government is now targeting the Ministry of Transport, followed by Agriculture and Health for a similar scrutiny.
Value for money
Minister Serame noted that the purpose of the inspection is to ensure accountability, transparency, efficiency, and most importantly, value for money.
“The Ministry (of Finance) will continue to conduct more audits for various expenditures to clamp down on inefficiencies, irregularities and cases of mismanagement,” she said.
“It is expected that firm decisions will emerge out of the findings and corrective action initiated by the end of this financial year.”
The Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), followed by the Ministry of Transport, topped the list of the most wasteful ministries in recent years, according to the head of the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crimes (DCEC), Tymon Katlholo, who is currently on suspension.
Katlholo made the startling revelation when appearing before the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC) where he indicated that the government was losing an estimated P600 million through corrupt practices on annual basis.
He attributed the cause of corruption to late procurement by the two ministries, especially in their use of the developmental budget.
“Last minute procurement is mainly the contributor to corruption,” he stated.
Katlholo told the PAC that DCEC had 215 cases under consideration for prosecution by the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) while 140 were pending before different courts, as well as a backlog of 619 active investigations.