SWAKOPMUND - Auditor-General Junias Kandjeke says that his office has come to the conclusion that 94 percent of village councils do not follow the appropriate financial framework or provide enough evidence so that an audit opinion can be passed on the state of their finances.
Kandjeke was addressing auditors of village councils at the 7th stakeholders briefing session on Tuesday held to discuss challenges in terms of financial statements and reports.
According to him, close to 50 percent of the village councils have received a disclaimer audit opinion for the past three years.
However, he pointed out that the Aroab Village Council has been the only one that received a clean audit report amongst all 17 village councils, consecutively for the past five years.
“On the flip side of the coin, the other 16 are still experiencing challenges to reach even a qualified audit opinion,” Kandjeke said.
Kandjeke also singled out Kamanjab Village Council for improving their audit opinion from a disclaimer to at least a qualified audit opinion.
“The dominant persistent audit opinion expressed on village councils for the past five years is a, disclaimer. For those that do not identify with this audit opinion term, it is when an opinion is expressed when the possible effect of a limitation on scope is so material and pervasive that the auditor has not been able to obtain sufficient appropriate audit evidence and accordingly is unable to express an opinion on the financial statements,” Kandjeke explained on Tuesday.
Hence he says village councils and their managers should embrace accountability in the utilization of public resources spread across all stakeholders involved.
The auditor-general also appealed to councillors, managements and auditors to play a more critical role in ensuring that village councils improve their management of resources.
“Our duty as auditors is to identify gaps and short comings, yours as managers is to rectify. Hence this meeting is to allow dialogue between stakeholders to discuss challenges with regard to financial reporting and expectations from our office.
We should be able to consult, share opinions and suggest possible solutions as stakeholders to ensure improved financial management, as this is only achievable if we lay our expectations and implement them,” Kandjeke stated.