DONORS have handed over a final audit report to the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) on the alleged misapplication of over K34 million by the Zambia National Farmers’ Union (ZNFU) to be used as part of the evidence in the on-going investigations.
A source within the ZNFU told the Daily Nation yesterday that the final report, which contained almost the same information with the audit report from EMM Corporate Partners, was handed to DEC to provide more lead information to the financial scam.
But when contacted for a comment, DEC spokesperson Theresa Katongo said the public relations department had not yet received any communication from the donors as such documents were a preserve of the investigating team.A source said nothing much had changed in the final report just as predicted by the Zambia Institute of Chartered Accountancy (ZICA) that even if the report was to be verified or a new auditing form was to be contracted, the final report would be the same or similar to the initial audit as variables would remain the same.
“The final report of the ZNFU has finally been completed and donors are reported to have presented it to DEC for further investigations. Very little has changed as the main findings remain the same,” the source said.
And Ms. Katongo said her office was yet to receive the final report from the donors as revealed as it could have been with the investigators who had not yet concluded their findings based on the draft that was presented to it by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).
“We do not have that final report from donors because everything to do with the investigations is handled by our colleagues who are investigating the matter. For now, that report has not yet reached us but I can confirm that investigations are still on-going,” Ms. Katongo said.
Massive misappropriation of donor funds totalling more than K34 million in activities bordering on fraud, tax evasion and sheer abuse of authority were unearthed at ZNFU in January this year.
According to a preliminary draft financial report compiled by the Swedish International Development Agency obtained by the Daily Nation, the ZNFU top management compromised presidents of the organisation and boards which were supposed to provide oversight to avoid fraud, theft and abuse of funds.
The report cites a case where close to K1 billion of donor funds were used to pay a contractor for vehicle tracking when in fact the owners of the company were a senior ZNFU official and his wife.
ZNFU is supported by Finland, Sweden and We Effect which have been providing core funding, but revelations of the massive abuse of funds perpetrated through fraud, theft and unauthorised loans, irregular contracts, fraudulent procurement and sheer impunity has forced the organisations to seek immediate recompense, changes to the leadership of the organisation, implementation of anti-fraud policies and complete re-imbursement of stolen funds.