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Posts Tagged ‘NCCR-Mageuzi

CAG yet to receive parties audit reports

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CAG yet to receive parties audit reports

Chairman of the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC),Mr Zitto Kabwe PHOTO|FILE

In Summary

NCCR-Mageuzi chairman James Mbatia refuted reports that the party has not submitted its audit reports for four consecutive years.

Dar es Salaam. The office of the Controller and Auditor General (CAG) said yesterday it was yet to receive audit reports from any of the nine political parties getting subvention.

The remark is in response to a controversy triggered by remarks of the chairman of the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC), Mr Zitto Kabwe. His committee has since summoned six of the parties to explain why their accounts were yet to be audited.

The response by the deputy CAG, Mr Francis Mwakapalila, is likely to intensify the subvention controversy which has put the political parties and Mr Kabwe in a face-off in the last one week.

Zitto has accused nine political parties with representation in the Parliament of failing to submit their financial accounts to the CAG for auditing. He directed the registrar of political parties to suspend the subsidies of the parties for their failure to comply with the guiding law.

Zitto claimed that the parties had failed to submit audit reports accounting for a total of Sh67.7 billion in the past four years — a requirement made by the Political Parties (Amendment) Act, 2009.

The deputy CAG told The Citizen that the truth about the controversy will be known on Friday at a joint meeting of all the parties.

He, however, clarified that the CAG’s office had allowed parties to seek the services of external auditors. According to Mr Mwakapalila, the CAG can contract qualified firms to audit the political parties.

“Political parties are expected to maintain proper accounts every year and submit their financial reports, audited by the CAG, to the registrar of political parties,” he detailed.

PAC has summoned the parties on Friday to explain why they failed to submit the said reports. “We will know who was right or wrong, I hope the CAG will also be there. Let’s be patient,” he added.

The nine political parties have been insisting that they have submitted their audited accounts to the CAG and accused Mr Kabwe of overstepping his mandate.

Already, the Civic United Front (CUF) said it would not attend the Friday meeting and accused Mr Kabwe of acting beyond his legal powers.

The party’s deputy secretary general (Mainland), Mr Julius Mtatiro, said his party was not on the list of the parties that have not submitted their audit reports.

The ruling CCM has strongly accused the PAC, saying it was aware of the requirements of the law and that the it had has been submitting its audit reports to the CAG.

Its Publicity and Ideology secretary, Mr Nape Nnauye, said the Tanzania Audit Corporation has audited its accounts from 2003/04 to 2010/2011. “We’re waiting for the 2011/2012 audit report which is still with the external auditors,’’ adding that the report would be forwarded with the CAG once it is ready.

NCCR-Mageuzi chairman James Mbatia refuted reports that the party has not submitted its audit reports for four consecutive years.

“Our accounts were audited and we sent reports to the registrar,’’ he said.

He said, however, that the CAG’s office was cash-strapped and unable to oversee the auditing of political parties.

Chadema Information officer, Mr Tumaini Makene, said his party was playing by the rules as far as financial propriety and transparency were concerned. According to Zitto’s committee, CCM has failed to account for Sh50.97 billion, Chadema (Sh9.2 billion), CUF (Sh6.29 billion), NCCR-Mageuzi (Sh677 million), UDP (Sh33 million), TLP (Sh217million), APPT-Maendeleo (Sh11 million), DP (Sh3.3 million) and Chausta (Sh2.4 million).

Meanwhile, two PAC members yesterday defended Mr Kabwe against attacks by political parties allegedly for personalising the subvention issue, saying the matter was owned by the Committee.

They told The Citizen separately that Zitto had full blessings of members of the PAC before he made the statement to the effect that accounts of nine political parties had not been audited for four years.

“That is the position of our committee and not Zitto’s creations as political parties want the public to believe,” said a member of the committee, Mr Abdul Marombwa.

He said they were wondering why the political parties were personalising the issue while the matter surfaced the committee met registrar of political parties, Mr Francis Mutungi, who revealed the information.

“There is no Zitto’s agenda here, we all sat and agreed on the matter,” he said.

Another PAC member who asked not be named said their team was implementing Political Parties (Amendment) Act, 2009, which requires them to submit the parties accounts to the CAG for auditing and forward the audit reports to the registrar.

“The registrar confirmed to us none of the nine parties fulfilled that legal requirement,” he said.

“That was not Zitto’s statement, it was the outcome of the meeting,” he insisted.

Source: THE CITIZEN http://www.thecitizen.co.tz/News/Cag-yet-to-receive-parties-audit-reports/-/1840392/2041932/-/jwtkmj/-/index.html

MPs sitting allowance up 185pc

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By The Citizen Reporter
Dar es Salaam. The daily sitting allowance for an MP has been increased by more close to over 285.7 per cent, The Citizen has been reliably informed.

Our Parliament

Some sources who attended the just-ended fifth Parliament told this paper that the amount has gone up by almost three times –  from Sh70,000 to a whopping Sh200,000 per day.

The latest adjustment has effectively increased the amount of cash that goes to a legislator pocket daily during a Bunge session to Sh330,000 because, besides the Sh200,000 for sitting, they also receive a per diem of Sh80,000 plus Sh50,000 for fuel.

However, when contacted, Clerk of the National Assembly Thomas Kashillila said his office was not aware of the said increase.

“I understand there was talk among MPs to have their allowances raised, but if that has been effected, my office hasn’t been formally informed yet.

Therefore, I cannot confirm that MPs’ allowances have gone up,” he said over his mobile phone yesterday. Dr Kashillila advised The Citizen to check up with the Speaker of the National Assembly Anne Makinda or her deputy, Mr Job Ndugai, for a precise response but our efforts were in vain for the two officials’ phones were not reachable despite repeated attempts.

Though many MPs who attended the just- ended Parliament session were hesitant to comment on the matter, impeccable sources confirmed to this paper that the sitting allowances have nearly tripled.

The MPs’ hesitation to comment on the raise could be on account of uneasiness stemming from the recent debate in which the opposition Chadema pressed for abolition of sitting allowances for the lawmakers.

When contacted, the Leader of Official Opposition in the Parliament, Mr Freeman Mbowe, saidthe latest raise clearly showed that the government has not taken note of Chadema’s sentiments over allowances.

He maintained that his party’s stand over allowances should not be personalised as it was national resources that are being used to overpay a few individuals while the majority of Tanzanians languished in abject poverty.

“We abide by our stand since the time the daily sitting allowances stood at Sh70,000. When we issued statements contending the allowance, some people, and a section of the media took the issue as a Chadema agenda, but we wanted to expose the misuse of taxpayers’ money,” he said adding:

“We have MPs’ pocketing Sh200,000 as sitting allowance and then there are some people in the government who are paid between Sh400,000 and Sh1 million as daily allowance.”

Mr Mbowe said personally, he would not know for certain that there has been a rise in sitting allowances for MPs since he doesn’t collect his.

“Maybe the new allowances were discussed in the House at the time I was attending  my cases in Arusha… I was only present during a few sessions towards the end of the debate on the Constitutional Review Act Bill,” he said.

The increase in MPs’ allowance comes at a time when the majority of ordinary Tanzanians are lamenting over the cost of living against their frozen incomes. Hardships for the mwananchi are reflected on the two-digit inflation which at the moment stands at around 17.9 per cent as announced by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) recently. The decision to increase MPs’ sitting allowance is also said to contradict the government’s five years development plan, unveiled mid this year, one of whose agenda was to reduce allowances.

Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda is also on record as telling the Parliament during the Budget session that the government had agreed to a proposal to slash allowances.

When contacted, Felix Mkosamali (Kibondo-NCCR Mgeuzi) and Rev Peter Msigwa (Iringa Urban – Chadema) declined to discuss the matter in detail and said MPs have not been officially informed of the decision to increase their sitting allowances. “I have not received any letter informing me that my allowance has been increased. I will inquire and once I get a categorical answer I will make my stand over this issue known,” said Mr Mkosamali.

But Deo Filikunjombe (Ludewa-CCM) said the raised allowance was justifiable given the meagre salaries paid to lawmakers.

“And my stand is that if MPs were being paid in accordance with the weight of their job, there would be no need to pay them hefty allowances and this is not for MPs only. Civil servants too receive very small salaries,” he said.

In June this year, the Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Parliament, Mr Zitto Kabwe, presented a letter in which he rejected his sitting allowance on the grounds that MPs were not supposed to be paid for sitting, arguing that their job, for which they receive monthly salaries, is to sit at the Bunge and debate.

Mr Kabwe’s stand, however, drew stiff opposition from a majority of the MPs, including some from his own party.

Source: The Citizen

Written by zittokabwe

November 28, 2011 at 9:33 AM