Report of the National Audit Authority Does Not Show the Amount of Lost Money – Thursday, 5.11.2009

Posted on 6 November 2009. Filed under: Week 637 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 637

“At the Hotel Cambodiana there was a press conference organized by the National Audit Authority on 30 October 2009, to present an audit report about the management of public finances, which had been checked from 2002 to 2009. But the report was only for 2006.

“The general auditor, Mr. Ut Chhon, stated in the conference that this report only s negatives, but he did not respond in detail to questions of journalists like: ‘According to the audit results, how much money was lost by corruption each year?’

“During the conference, which lasted for several hours to share information through the report presented, there were four main points, which included 12 important items about resource management and the audit results included. Those important points are the same mentioned also in a book of 100 points in a report written by the Sam Rainsy Party in 2003.

“The report speaks about tax on unused land, which is in line with the policy of the Sam Rainsy Party. As a result of the audit it was found that there were many cases where tax was not paid for unused land, while several companies received concession land from the government of more than one million hectares, where the state has not set appropriate costs for leasing this land.

“The report speaks about this point, stressing that the Ministry of Agriculture, on behalf of the whole government, had signed agreements with more than 70 companies from 1992 to 2006, to provide more than one million hectares of concession land for development, and most agreements were made, deciding that the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Economy and Finance are responsible for assessing and for setting the costs for leasing of the land. But by 2007, the assessment and setting of costs for leasing this concession land was not fully implemented in accordance with the above decision. The Ministry of Economy and Finance agreed with the audit report on this point.

“The National Audit Authority, established in 2000 ,started to work in 2002, and has worked by now for seven years. But this institution has only just now released a report, and the opinions was expressed that it was released to satisfy what donors want. Anyway, the auditor general, Mr. Ut Chhon, told journalists that the release of the report is done based on the will of the government, not because of pressure from any other country.

“Mr. Ut Chhon added that the audit of the working team had discovered some problems, like at some tax institutions, collecting taxes at the border, and monitoring and assessing the tax to be demanded for goods loaded in containers by some companies – this was difficult, and the assessment of tax collection covers only about 25%.

“He spoke also about the management of state property, and about the licensing of ownership of state property, where many of such cases occur in cities and provinces countrywide.

“According to the report consisting of more than 500 cases, it is said that corruption led to the loss of much state resources.

“When asked whether the general auditor can assess how much tax was lost every year, Mr. Ut Chhon said that he cannot say anything, and that every country is the same. But he added that only England made the amount of the lost money publicly known.

“At the end of the conference, Mr. Ut Chhon said that he expects that the release of this report will promote better relation between the public and the National Audit Authority, in order to ease the work of his institution in the future.

“However, what the national and the international public want is to know the amount of money missed because of corruption, and they want to see that the results of the audit explicitly identify negative points, especially about the loss of national resources.

“Recently, the US Ambassador in Phnom Penh, Ms. Carol Rodley, said that corruption in Cambodia amounts to a loss of state resource of about US$500 million each year. This speech had invited strong reactions from government officials.

“Analysts said that the National Audit Authority released the report just to satisfy donors.” Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #521-522, 31-5.10-11.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Thursday, 5 November 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #325-328, 31-5.10-11.2009

  • Cambodia Appointed [Thai ousted prime minister] Thaksin as Prime Minister’s Economic Advisor [on 27 October 2009]
  • Thai Parliamentarians Had Arguments over Thaksin’s Case [about the extradition to send him back if he comes to Cambodia]
  • 25,000 Condoms Will Be Distributed to Boat Racers [during the Water Festival]
  • The Government Provides US$4 Million to Set Up Pumping Machines to Pump [flood] Water from the Russey Keo District [Phnom Penh]
  • Cambodia Will Build a Nine-Storey Hospital [near the Calmette Hospital offering high standard health services with help from Denmark]
  • On the Second Day [of the Water Festival] a Boat Racer Died after a Boat Sank; the Audience Is Careful about the A/H1N1 Virus [Phnom Penh]
  • A Police Official [and another man] Raped a Virgin and Compensated Her With Only One Million Riel [approx. US$250; so they were not sent to court to be convicted – Phnom Penh]
  • The National Independence Day This Year Will Be Celebrated on 8 October [rather than on the normal 9 November in order to help the King attend the event – according the Permanent Organizing Commission for National and International Ceremonies]
  • Police and Fishery Officials Put the Blame on Each Other for Arresting Fishermen to Extort Money [Kompong Thom]
  • Cambodia Will Increase the Military Budget to US$277 Million in 2010 [while in 2009, it was US$223 million]
  • American Economy Grew by 3.5% in the Third Quarter [according to AFP]
  • 187 Countries Demands the USA to Withdraw the Ban of Transportation to Cuba

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2086, 31.10.2009

  • World Bank: The Asian Economy Recovers [because of timely stimulating resources made available by some countries like China and South Korea], but in Cambodia, there Is No Imprevement Yet
  • Cambodia Confirmed Again Not to Extradite [the ousted former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra to Thailand [if he comes to Cambodia]
  • A Danish Man Was Arrested in Poipet for Having Sexual Relationships with Many Young Girls
  • Three Orphans Were Tortured by the Director of an [orphan] Center, They Were Found with Marks on their Bodies [he was arrested – Kandal]
  • A Trach Tree Fell on a Poor House [because of strong wind], Killing Two People [a mother and her daughter] and Injuring Three [Mondolkiri]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #521, 31.10.2009

  • Report of the National Audit Authority Does Not Show the Amount of Lost Money
  • The Impact from Sand Dredging to Fill the Boeng Kak Lake Killed a Man and His Four Sons from an Electric Shock in the Sewage System [the electricity got into the water and shocked the man when he waded through the water in his house; then the children were also electrocuted when they waded through the water to help their father, thinking he had fainted and fallen because of fainting]
  • Yuth Phouthang Was Replaced as Koh Kong Governor [by the Srae Ambel district governor, Mr. Bun Leut] while [Phnom Penh Municipal Governor] Kep Chuktema Is Also Facing to Be Replaced [according to a person who asked not to be named]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6793, 31-1.10-11.2009

  • A Siamese [Thai] Court Sentenced Twelve Khmer Citizens to Serve Five to Eight Years in Prison for Entering Thai Territory to Cut Trees [Cambodia will appeal]
  • A Khmer Citizen Was Shot, Injured, and Arrested while Six Others Managed to Escape Back to Their Village [they climbed the Dangrek Mountains to cut trees – a local official said that they were in an the area where there are not yet border markers set up]
  • A Tragedy Happened at a Flooded House, Where a Man and Four Children Were Electrocuted [because of flooding] while His Wife and the Another Son Were Seriously Injured [Russey Keo district, Phnom Penh]
  • The Audit Authority Wants to See Income and Expense Outside of the National Treasury, Especially Foreign Aid, to Be Checked Thoroughly
  • Man Raped His Daughter and Another Man Rapped His Niece – Both Girls Are Six Years Old [both men were arrested – Banteay Meanchey]
  • The Authorities Lodged a Complaint at a Court against Mr. Sam Rainsy for Removing Temporary Wooden Cambodian-Vietnamese Border Markers

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #38, 4.10.2009

  • The Water Festival Finished Successfully, but the Number of Visitors Declined [to about one million] Compared to Last Year [because of economic problems of the people and because of the typhoon Ketasana]
  • South Korea Grants More Than US$200,000 [to Cambodia] to Restore Damages Caused by the Typhoon

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5035-503, 31.10.2009

  • [Thai ousted prime minister] Thaksin Reduced Tension [between Cambodia and Thailand] by Saying that He Will not Come to Cambodia
  • The Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology Informs that the Rain in the Rainy Season Has Come to an End
  • Asian Development Bank: Cambodia Is Among 19 Countries where More Than 10% of the Population [of about 14 million in Cambodia] Live in Poverty
  • The National Assembly of Cambodia Will Ask the “Duma” – the Parliament of Russia – to Encourage the Russian Government to Cancel the US$1.5 Billion Debt That Cambodia Owes
  • Because he Got Jealous, a Man Attacked His Wife with a Khvev [a long handled knife] and Cut Her Throat to Kill Her [he was arrested – Kos Krolor District, Battambang]
  • [Hundreds of] Thai Demonstrators Demanded that Their Government Closes the Border Crossings, and Recall their Ambassador from Cambodia [because Cambodia does not agree to withdraw the Cambodian troops and villagers from the contested 4.6 square km area around the Preah Vihear Temple]
  • [The president of the Sam Rainsy Party] Sam Rainsy Denied that He Removed the Wooden Border Markers [and said that local citizens did it – according to the cabinet of the Sam Rainsy Party]
  • A Man Lured a [14-year-old] Girl to Rape Her Seven Times [he was arrested – Battambang]
  • A Buddhist Elder Raped a Six-Year-Old Girl [he was arrested – Battambang]
  • A Tropical Storm Killed at Least 57 People in Vietnam

Have a look at the last editorial – you can access it directly from the main page of the Mirror.
And please recommend us also to your colleagues and friends.

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