Government has no clue of where Rs 27.73 billion has been spent
The government has no information where a huge portion of foreign aid has been spent.
Some 27.73 billion of technical assistance (TA) that the government received from donors has no records where it has been spent, according to the latest report of the Office of the Auditor General (OAG).
Some 25 government agencies have received Rs 84.48 billion aid including technical assistance – for 250 projects – in the last fiscal year 2012-13, but it was not known in which sectors the amount is spent as the technical assistance is not featured in the red book that lists receiving and spending agencies.
The 51th annual report of the Auditor General also revealed that the amount was related to 95 agreements. Technical assistance is usually used for consultancy jobs including carrying out detail project report study of large projects, capacity enhancement of domestic institutions and individuals and for consultancy services. Technical assistance is accepted in only grants.
Though the Financial Procedure Act states government agencies must submit the details of income and expenditure, including technical assistance, some Rs 27.73 billion has no trace in the Supreme Auditing Institution's report.
The non-transparency in income and expenditure of such foreign aid not only reveals deep rooted misuse of aid but also cheating on the tax from the donor countries.
Earlier reports from the auditor has also raised the non-transparency of technical assistance. In the last report of the Office of Auditor General a fiscal year ago in 2011-12 had also pointed out that there was no records of some 94.53 per cent of technical assistance that is Rs 58.76 billion out of Rs 62.16 billion.
Though, the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee had directed the government to have audit technical assistance also, it is yet not audited, neither is there a trace of where it has been spent.
"Rs 84 billion is a huge amount that has been sent for the Nepali people, but neither the government nor the donors are serious in making it transparent," assistant auditor general Baburam Gautam said.
As the donors themselves operates the technical assistance, the auditor general's office donot audit there accounts.