Liberia: General Auditing Commission Finalizing Nat’l Lottery Authority ‘Shocking’ Audit
MONROVIA – The Frontpage Africa has reliably learnt that the General Auditing Commission (GAC) is concluding its audit of the operations of the National Lottery Authority(NLA) after the management of the NLA reportedly responded to the GAC Audit Management Letter sent a fortnight ago to the NLA’s Management for official response.
According to well-placed GAC source, the Commission, which has the mandate to audit government transactions and investigate issues of corruption and financial malpractices, will submit the audit report to the Legislature and Executive for action following the conclusion of said audit .
The GAC source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, added that the Commission is expected to come up with appropriate recommendations from the Auditor General for action.
The GAC Audit Management Letter sent to the Management of the NLA was contained in the preliminary findings of the audit.
The Audit of the NLA, which is clothed with the authority to supervise games of chance which have been listed as including raffles, numbers games, casinos, slot machines or promotional competitions or any scheme, system or arrangement that results in the distribution of a prize by chance, covers the years 2015 – 2019 respectively.
Accordingly, in the GAC Audit Management Letter sent to the NLA’s Management leaked to media discovered that $US 2.7M cannot be accounted for and has asked the Management of the NLA to explain why the funds cannot be accounted for.
Although the audit has not been finalized, it does seem quite alarming that the NLA’s administration, which is headed by Mr. Martin S. Kollie would have expended huge amount of monies supposedly without any documentation and or proper authorization.
The audit also uncovered that checks were allegedly written to various persons, including Director-General Kollie without any source document and or explanation why payments were being made.
At the same time, the Frontpage Africa has also gathered that the Board Chairman of the NLA, Mr. Titus Charlie, has not seen or received copy of the GAC Audit Management Letter sent to the NLA’s Management for official response.
The NLA Board Chairman, it was reported, was never sent a formal communication from the GAC prior and after the Management Letter was sent concerning the ongoing audit of the NLA, and therefore, he could not comment on the incessant media reports about the preliminary findings of the audit, which paints a debauched picture of the financial operations of the NLA during the period under review.
The report mentioned that while the NLA Board Chair wholeheartedly welcomes the audit of the NLA in keeping with accountability and transparency, he added that it would have been prudent had the GAC formally informed him and other members of the board, including the NLA’s Boss Kollie about the process, but maintained that nothing like that happened.
“I heard about the GAC Audit of the NLA’s Operations in the media and not from even the Management of the entity. At least we supposed to be informed as it is traditionally done,” the media report, among other things, quoted Charlie via anonymous source as stating.
So far, the NLA’s Boss Kollie has not commented on the media reports about the preliminary findings of the audit of the NLA . However, unconfirmed reports said he will comment on the matter following rigorous consultations with his lawyers on account that he has no knowledge about the reported GAC audit of the NLA.
On the other hand, this paper has established that the GAC officially communicated its audit process to Management of the NLA via the Deputy NLA Boss, Mr. Neved P. Kortu, who was then acting as head of the entity during the suspension of MD Kollie, who was reportedly reinstated recently by the Executive Mansion .