By Romeo Takundwa
AUDITOR General Mildred Shiri has said her office has been receiving threats from companies and as such has resorted to withholding their names from the public.
The Auditor-General said she previously got threatened by some companies she had reported as corrupt in her previous audit reports.
Giving oral evidence to the Public Accounts Parliamentary Portfolio committee on Monday, Chiri said that as a result of the threats, her office resorted to not naming the companies involved in underhand dealings in the recently released 2019 report to avoid lawsuits.
“Regarding the naming of companies with issues in the annual report, the approach of naming suppliers and companies was not done in order to manage the risk associated with potential litigation. There have been comebacks with some suppliers on some of our findings in the past.
“Those that have approached us in the past were saying naming them in our reports had resulted in them losing business. They think just mentioning their names taints them as this takes away their future businesses.
“Some would sort of threaten us when we checked with our secretariat. They warned us that we would face a litany of lawsuits if we continued with naming companies,” she said.
The Auditor’s General Report is mandated by the constitution to audit the accounts, financial systems and financial management of all government departments, institutions and agencies as well as provincial, metropolitan councils and all local authorities.
The latest report however noted a lot of anomalies in unauthorized expenditure, non delivery of purchased motor vehicles, price inflating among others prejudicing millions of dollars of public funds.