“Ongoing audits not funded by state purse,” says DPM

Deputy Prime Minister Peter Turnquest.

Finance Minister Peter Turnquest refuted claims yesterday that the ongoing audits of state-ran enterprises are being funded by the public purse.

Damning audits, which were recently conducted at Bahamas Power and Light Company (BPL) and the Water and Sewerage Corporation (W&SC), however. The cost of those audits has yet to be revealed.

 

Opposition members, specifically Opposition Leader Phillip Davis – who came under fire of the audits conducted by Ernst and Young – questioned the auditing procedures and said that the government was on a “witch-hunt” of former government officials.  The government has also been accused of “wasting” public funds on audits.

 

Turnquest however, clarified yesterday that the audits are not paid for by the treasury.

 

“Both of the institutions (BPL & W&S) are quasi-governmental agencies or state-owned enterprises and are governed by their own agreements,” he said.

 

“They pay their own expenses and that doesn’t necessarily come before us, we will get the financial reports.”

 

Turnquest added that the corporations are statutory and are governed by a board of directors.

 

“They manage their finances”, he said.

 

“That doesn’t come to the Ministry of Finance (MOF) they will make a report to us at the end of the of the year at which time the public, everyone, will know how they have managed their finances.”