Dar es Salaam. National Assembly Speaker Job Ndugai raised eyebrows yesterday with a fresh dig at the office of the Controller and Auditor General.
In an unprecedented move, the Speaker announced Parliament’s intention to review the audited report of the CAG’s office. While a normal and routine task, Mr Ndugai’s public directive to the Public Accounts Committee to review the audit report and report back to him immediately raised queries.
It was the first time in recent years the Speaker had informed Parliament about an audit of the CAG’s office.
The revelation caught PAC chairperson Naghenjwa Kaboyoka by surprise.
Ms Kaboyoka told Mwananchi in a telephone interview that she did not know why the speaker chose to make the remarks in Parliament at this time.
“Audit of the CAG’s office is a routine matter. I don’t know why the Speaker raised the matter in the House,’’ she said.
“I would like to communicate to you that the National Audit Office, which many of you tend to call the CAG’s office, has been audited,’’ Mr Ndugai said before the start of the questions and answers session.
“No one can audit oneself. Going by the Public Auditing Act, the CAG’s office should be audited by Parliament through the Public Accounts Committee” said Mr Ndugai, who has in recent months been engaged in a war of words with the CAG, Prof Mussa Assad over the latter’s reference to Parliament as “weak.” Prof Assad was censured by the House for the remark, whose MPs passed a motion not to work with him.
“It is Parliament through PAC which is mandated to appoint an external auditor for that purpose,’’ he emphasized.
Mr Ndugai said the external auditor had already submitted the report for scrutiny.
“After going through the report, PAC will bring it back to the Speaker’s office,” he said, without elaborating what next.