Ngwaru Maghembe (left) presenting the report by the accounts committee to the assembly on July/18/2019. PHOTO|FILE: BURUNDI TIMES
The East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) named senior former and current East African community officials who should face disciplinary measures and actions for negligence of duty, and breach of EAC Rules and regulations for the mismanagement of community funds.
In a 161 paged report presented by the accounts committee to the regional assembly, law makers disclosed names of officials who are accused of the mismanagement of community’s fund .
The assembly indicated that a member or a staff who contravenes the rules and regulations of the community shall be held personally responsible, financially liable and shall be disciplined in accordance with provisions of the staff rules and regulations as approved by the council of ministers.
“It is therefore the responsibility of the house and the community to mention the names of the individuals whom the auditors have found responsible of either misuse, abuse or the negligence of the use of resources of the community,” said Aden Abdikadir a lawmaker from Kenya.
Among the senior EAC officials named in the report included the former and current Secretary General, Deputy Secretary Generals and procurement officers.
The accounts committee revealed gross irregularities in the recruitment and award of short term contracts a process that contravenes staff rules and regulations and the EAC treaty.
According to the accounts committee there was no evidence that the engagement of short term staff was recommended to the council for approval as required by the regulations, “there was no evidence to show that there was competitive process in the engagement and the determination of salary levels was not clear,” reads the report.
The report indicated the selected staff showed that the same officers have been engaged on short term contracts for a period over 7 years. Although the short term employee were continually employed, there was no evidence that those employees were entitled to leave and terminal benefits. Which is against the international labor requirement and contrary to article 70 (1) (2) and regulations 37 (2) of the EAC staffRules and Regulations.
“History of mismanagement is not of this date it has been for a long time may be it can be a continuation of a former leadership,” said Jean Marie Muhirwa a law maker from Burundi.
Mr. Muhirwa said that in order to get rid of fund mismanagement in the community there was need for a comparing records from the former leadership with the current one, “see if this issue of mismanagement has been a continuation or not.”
According the EAC management it is currently operating under a structure and establishment that was approved in 2006, while awaiting the completion of the institutional review exercise that has been ongoing for ten years. In interim it resorted to using short term staff to fill in the gaps.