The 2021 Auditor General Report is in and guaranteed to be another best seller. As usual Auditor General Mr. Leigh Trotman and team outlined a number of incomplete and questionable transaction done by our public servants.
What Barbadians can be guaranteed arising from the 2021 Auditor General Report is that the 2022 report will be more of the same. Although former Opposition Leader Bishop Joe Atherley has voiced concerns about a moribund Public Service Committee (PAC) during the current dispensation with no elected opposition in the Lower House – the question for the good Bishop is tell when has the workings of the PAC ever made a difference? Mind you the blogmaster is not disputing the fact the PAC is designed to be an important working committee in our system of governance.
To be honest the blogmaster stopped reading after the Auditor General’s introductory comment on pages 9 and 10. What is the point of reading the same old same old that continues under BLP and DLP governments? There was high expectation given to the public by Minister Ryan Straughn in the finance ministry when the 2019 Public Finance Management Act was passed in parliament. To date state owned entities (SOEs) have largely ignored a key requirement of the ACT which is to present timely financials. We wonder why apathy, cynicism and significant disengagement by citizens continues to grow. Can we seriously describe what we practice as a relevant democratic system of government?
How can a people have confidence in any government of Barbados- including the BLP incumbent with its unprecedented 30-0 mandate- if it is unable to demonstrate an adequate financial management standard of public monies? The NIS fund and Clearwater comes to mind.
Why does the Auditor General have to repeat year after year, whether B or D government, that he does not have adequate resources to efficiently give account how public monies are spent? Instead the BLP administration had no problem establishing a Public Affairs Unit which many believe duplicates the functions of the Barbados Government Information Service (BGIS). We know why ‘dont’ we?