Written by Lahiru Fernando
05 Feb, 2018 | 10:44 pm
People of Sri Lanka may remember the National Audit Bill.
This bill, which could end all financial fraud and corruption, has been delayed time and time again for the past two years.
According to the Auditor General Gamini Wijesinghe, he would have had the opportunity of assisting the bond scam investigations, if the National Audit Bill had been introduced.
Why is there a delay when even the Attorney General has approved the bill?
During the 2015 Presidential Election, the then-campaigning Yahapalana Government promised the introduction of this bill as one of the main campaign promises.
They pledged to introduce this bill during the first 100 days in office.
The 19th Amendment to the Constitution -adopted on the May 15, 2015-, paved the way for independent commissions -including the Audit Commission.
Members were also appointed to the commission, however Parliament has so far failed to take any action to move the National Audit Bill forward.
The 19th amendment to the constitution say that President has the responsibility to ensure the function of the independent commissions.
However, it was the Prime Minister’s office which took on the ‘National Audit Bill’ responsibility and then even obtained cabinet approval.
According to the Auditor General, this is where the delays began.
“A lot of time was taken because they amended this bill on 23 separate occasions.” said AG Wijesinghe.
“However we cannot do anything productive for the nation.”
According to the Auditor General;
So, who is causing this delay at the Prime Minister’s office?
“There are a group of corrupt secretaries who want to delay this act. Who wrote the first letter to amend it or destroy it? It came from the Ministry of Finance.”
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