Controversial government holding company National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) was issued with disclaimer opinions for the years 2002 and 2003, according to the Report of the Auditor General for 2010.
The state of NICIL’s accounts has come under close scrutiny because of the belief that monies have been flowing to it instead of to the Consolidated Fund. Its accounts have also been seriously backlogged.
The audit report said that twenty audits were contracted out for the period January 1, 2010 to August 31, 2011 to the value of $47M. The report said that an important aspect of the Audit Act is the requirement for the concerned ministers to have the audited accounts along with the auditor general’s reports on them and the responses of the entities tabled in the National Assembly. This statement seemed to suggest that this was not being done.
Stating that disclaimer opinions are issued as a result of “limitation in scope and fundamental uncertainties”, the report listed reasons why NICIL’s accounts fell into this category for 2002-3.
The report said that inventories with a value of $1.17B were not subjected to a physical count at year end and the provision of $943.8M was based on a fixed percentage. Further, included in receivables due within a year was an amount of $1.3B which represented receivables of the Guyana Oil Company. However, the report said that no provision was made for the sums of $573.4M and $309.1M listed as receivables from GPL and its predecessor, GEC. Further, the report said that share certificates in support of the amounts indicated as stated capital for the Bauxite industry Development Company, the Guyana Pharmaceutical Corporation, the Guyana National Newspapers Limited and the National Edible Oil Company were not presented for audit examination.
Qualified opinions – defined in the report as reflecting uncertainties of a fundamental nature relative to amounts shown in the financial statements – were issued for two entities. These were the Guyana National Newspapers Limited for 2009 and the Guyana National Printers Limited for 2010. In relation to the former, the auditor general’s report said that no provision for bad debts was made on trade receivables amounting to $58.9M which were more than a year old.