AUDITOR-General Mildred Chiri has said most State entities are yet to align their practices and policies with the provisions of the Public Entities Corporate Governance Act after 53 entities failed to submit their financial statements for audit.
Chiri revealed this in the 2021 audit report on State-owned entities and parastatals presented to Parliament yesterday.
She said at the time of producing the report in relation to the 2019, 2020 and 2021 financial years, 77 audits had been completed, and 100 were in progress.
“There were 53 entities that had not yet submitted financial statements for audit. Among those in arrears were four entities whose accounts were in arrears of more than three years,” Chiri said.
“While I appreciate the efforts made by government in the form of statutory/structural reforms, inter alia, enactment of the Public Entities Corporate Governance Act [Chapter 10:31], establishment of the Corporate Governance Unit in the Office of the President and Cabinet, Central Internal Audit unit in the ministry of Finance and Economic Development etcetera, most entities are yet to align their practices and policies with the provisions of the Act.”
Chiri red-flagged governance issues, management of assets, revenue collection and questionable procurement in her audit.
“Governance issues reported in the current year are in respect of weak internal controls, unsupported expenditure, non-alignment of accounting processes with accounting standards, noncompliance with income tax provisions and other issues in respect of Board structures,” she said.
“The audit findings warrant the attention of management and those charged with governance. The audit revealed that most of the weaknesses emanated from governance issues.
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“I envisage a situation whereby the performance of State-owned enterprises and parastatals will greatly improve if my recommendations and provisions of the said Act are implemented.”