Tuesday, October 12, 2010

NARI Ask To Put Its House In Order

As its Annual Report is said to lack substantial information

Banjul, The Gambia (TNBES) The National Agricultural Research Institute (NARI) has been asked by the National Assembly Public Account and Public Enterprise Committee to put its house in order.

The order came in the wake of the Committee’s rejection of NARI’s Annual and Financial Audit Account Report for the period 2003 to 2008, during a sitting to scrutinise the public sector yearly reports on Tuesday.

The Speaker of the National Assembly, Hon. Elizabeth Renner said that NARI, as a government institution should always be aware of the fact that they are obliged to report to the Assembly every year on its annual report.

Mrs. Renner stressed that the report has no substantial information that the National Assembly and the Subject Specialist can relay on, to assess the performance, weakness or constraints of the Institution. She added:
“your good work will disappear if you don’t come out with something presentable.”

She also advises officials of NARI to put in place a proper filing and recording system for proper auditing. She announce that the Assembly and the Subject Specialist will give NARI official a chance to put its house order
by rectifying their mistakes and report back to the Committee on 10th
February, 2010.

Unexpected, NARI’s Auditor General, Mr. Amadou Sanneh accepted the blame and take full responsibility of the error in the report, in which he was commended by the Speaker. However, Mrs. Renner was quick to add
that the blame is not only directed to the Auditor General but the Institution
as a whole, our reporter said.

“You cannot Audit an account which is not given to you,” she told NARI’s Auditor.

Nonetheless, Renner also disagrees with the comments made by the NARI Auditor General that the time given to them to report back was too short.

She said: ‘enough time was given to all institutions because they were informed since last year.’

In response to the Speaker’s comments, NARI Director General Mr. Babu Jobe argued that the lack of enough funds deters them from producing enough material to the Public Account and Public Enterprise Committee of the National
Assembly as expected.

According to Mr. Jobe, his Institution is presently under a transition, because at the moment NARI has no Management Board. The former Board has been dissolved and now there is no board that we can consult, he told the Committee.
“We are looking forward to having a management board,” he said. VOL:2 ISSN:71

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