The National Council Standing Committee on Public Accounts and Economy is concerned that financial statements for the Gibeon Village Council for 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022 are still outstanding.
The committee made these remarks in a report presented in the National Council on Tuesday on an engagement it embarked on with the council on the council’s audit reports for the financial years 2016 to 2018.
“The committee noted with concern that the financial statements for subsequent years (2019, 2020, 2021, 2022) are still outstanding,” they said.
According to the parliamentary committee, provisions of section 87(1) of the Local Authorities Act, 1992 requires the submission of financial statements annually and within three months after the end of each financial year.
In addition, it also observed that supporting documents requested for 2016, 2017, and 2018 were not available.
“From the responses of the Village Council, it was observed that there were no remedies in place to improve performance and audit opinion,” it said.
In this vein, the MPs recommended that the council develop a strategic plan, which must be cascaded into annual plans and performance agreements and further be used to measure the performance of the CEO.
It also recommends that the Giboen Village Council take a resolution requesting the urban and rural development ministry to assist the Village Council with the secondment of staff to assist the council with the running of its affairs.
“The committee further recommends that the council address the growing concern by developing alternative sources of income and strengthening the debt collection measures by government institutions.”
During the engagement, the committee also asked whether the village council was benefitting as a VAT vendor or registration and at the same time requested the village council to explain why expenditures were processed inclusive of VAT in its general ledger.
According to the committee, the village council responded that it is benefitting from the VAT registration.
“The accounting officer further indicated that expenditures were processed VAT inclusive as the FINSTEL is programmed to automatically split the VAT. The committee recommends that the council train the senior accountant on how to capture invoices correctly on the system.”
Furthermore, the committee asked the village council to explain why the maintenance account in the general ledger was not disclosed and also wanted to know to whom a tender worth N$4 million was awarded to.
In response, the village council, according to the accounting officer, was not aware of it and it only knew of the tender of N$ 2 201 226.50 which was granted to AB Construction for road works.
“The committee recommends that the council follow procurement procedure and account for the N$4 million during the next audit,” said the report.