PPP executive member Anil Nandlall on Thursday criticized government’s decision to have chartered accountants Anand Goolsarran and Christopher Ram conduct the forensic audit of several state agencies saying that they are inappropriate for the task.
“I cannot be persuaded and I don’t think that any reasonable mind can be persuaded that Christopher Ram and Anand Goolsarran can ever bring an objective mind to bear on this process and that is what is required”, Nandlall told reporters during a press conference at Freedom House.
He said that he has taken note of government’s announcement of forensic audits into the functioning of several state-owned agencies. He however feels that an audit into the 2015 elections should be at the top of the list.
“There is no more mammoth act of corruption or allegation of corruption which has taken place than in the 2015 elections…so one would have expected that that is a place that you should do a forensic audit first if you are interested in unearthing corruption”, he said.
He added that one would have thought that when the joint opposition took office they “would have been walking in on this corruption in these various ministries. That is the impression …they created that this thing is overflowing. It is overwhelming. Now they have to appoint auditors to do forensic audits to find this massive corruption that they were speaking about. So they have to now look with a magnifying glass to look for this huge mountain of corruption that they led the people of Guyana believe existed in these offices”.
Turning to those chosen by government to conduct the audits, he said “Look at the personnel whom they have choose to do these audits, two sidekicks of theirs Anand Goolsarran and Christopher Ram”.
He said that as he understands it an audit is an objective forensic analysis of the financial systems and how monies were spent.
Minister within the Ministry of Finance Jaipaul Sharma told Stabroek News recently that Goolsarran, former auditor general is forensically auditing government holding company, the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited while Ram will soon commence similar work on the Guyana Geology & Mines Commission and the Guyana Gold Board.
Soon after taking office, the APNU+AFC government announced that several government agencies would undergo forensic audits. Minister of Finance Winston Jordan had named Goolsarran and Ram as two of the persons who would be conducting the audits. However, there have been some criticisms over the selection of these two individuals because they were fierce critics of the past administrations and the practices of some of the agencies named to be audited.
Later in the press conference, Bishop Juan Edghill queried where government managed to get money for the GuySuCo bailout and public infrastructural work when it has been said that the Consolidated Fund was empty.