Monday 24 September 2012

Audit report delay suspicious, says PKR

  • Hazlan Zakaria
  • 1:05PM Sep 24, 2012
PKR today questioned the delay of the auditor-general’s report for last year which has been postponed until at least one week after the 2013 Budget has been tabled in the Dewan Rakyat this session.

NONE“It is as if the government has a secret agenda to try and hide weaknesses and abuses (in government finances),” said its deputy president Azmin Ali (right) when met by reporters in Parliament House today.

He argued that the report is necessary for parliamentarians to analyse and debate the supply bill.

“The report is important. We don’t want to debate in parliament without basis. We need the audit report to show if public funds are spent according to procedures or if there are abuses.”

Furthermore, he said that the time to debate the budget itself is limited and the move by the government may be an attempt by to “try and avert attention away from abuses” as the audit report with its details on possible inconsistencies will only come out one week after the tabling of the budget.

By then he worried it would be too late for MPs to pick up issues to bring into the debate.

“I want to ask Nazri why is this happening. In a government that is speaking about transformation, they should be more open.”

He was responding to Nazri’s earlier statement that the 2011 audit report will be delayed by at least one week after the 2013 Budget is tabled, so as to allow more room for debate and not allow the report to steal the limelight from the supply bill.

Meanwhile, asked to respond to the matter at a press conference in the Parliament lobby, Pakatan de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim said such a thing will not happen if the opposition coalition were to take over Putrajaya,

“The audit report will always be tabled before the next year’s budget.”

This, he said, is so that MPs can debate the budget carefully and check before funds are allocated to a ministry, to see if there has been previous excesses that need to be remedied.

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