Kerr Fatou Online Media House
with focus on the Gambia and African News. Gambia Press Union 2021 TV Platform OF The Year

Mayor Lowe Expresses Concerns About Transfer of Finance Directors

0 474

Rohey Malick Lowe, Mayor Of Banjul City Council

By Ramatoulie Jawo 

Mayor Rohey Malick Lowe of the Banjul City Council (BCC) has voiced serious reservations regarding the transfer of Finance Directors highlighted in audit reports by the National Audit Office. 

Speaking at the National Assembly on Tuesday, February 20th, 2024, during the presentation of the BCC’s activity report and financial statements to the Finance and Public Accounts Committee (FPAC), Mayor Lowe expressed dismay over the apparent relocation of implicated Finance Directors.

“It is really sad that some of the Finance Directors have been transferred after some of them have been categorically mentioned by the National Audit Office. So, for me is like losing trust in the establishment because you cannot understand that you have NAO complaining to you about issues, and then when you want to get to the root of the matter, all of a sudden the finance director or CEO is transferred somewhere else”, she said.

She pointed out that instead of addressing issues head-on, transferring individuals merely perpetuates a culture of impunity where accountability is sidestepped. Mayor Lowe emphasized the importance of upholding the integrity of the National Audit Office’s findings and ensuring that those implicated face appropriate consequences.

“The minimum that one will have is to be transferred to somewhere else. So, this is really sad, and I will not do justice to BCC if I did not mention this issue. So for me, I really understand the use of the NAO when they raise issues, the minimum that will happen to CEOs and Financial Director is to be transferred, and I think the NAO is here to help us”. She stated.

While Mayor Lowe emphasized that she does not oppose the transfer of Finance Directors, she stressed the importance of addressing internal issues and ensuring accountability for serious matters.

“This is really painful and for me, I cannot just sit down and keep quiet over this. It means that I am not doing justice to our establishment and the NAO as well”, she said.

Acknowledging the challenges faced by the BCC, Mayor Lowe underscored the importance of respecting the National Audit Office and its reports, which she believes are currently undervalued.

She expressed frustration that blame for council issues often falls solely on her, the mayor, regardless of individual responsibilities within the council.

“Even if a budget is missing at the council, they will not say the CEO or the finance Director or anybody, but they will say the mayor. Now is the time to push them so that the courts can hear us. The best weapon to be armed with is to remove them from our payroll so that we can fight,” Mayor Lowe stressed. 

In response to Mayor Lowe’s concerns, Alhagie S Darboe, Chairman of the National Assembly’s standing committee on Finance and Public Accounting Committee (FPAC), advised her to bring her case before the National Assembly Select Committee on Regional Government for further action.

Darboe emphasized the constitutional mandate of the National Audit Office in auditing all institutions annually and presenting their findings to the National Assembly for scrutiny and consideration.

He assured Mayor Lowe that the Assembly would address audit queries and submit reports to relevant authorities for further investigation and action.

“The Assembly will also submit its reports to the relevant authorities such as the Office of the President and the Office of the Inspector General of the Police and where there are issues of fraud that should be investigated and bring the culprits to book,” He told BCC.

Moreover, Darboe clarified that while the National Audit Office has the authority to refer cases to the police for investigation, they are not the prosecuting authority but serve to bring attention to potential wrongdoing.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.