Sarawak ministry given five months to improve financial management

KUCHING: A ministry in Sarawak is giving itself five months to improve its financial management after receiving a less than satisfactory rating in the Auditor-General's Report 2018.

The Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Ministry came in at the bottom of 32 state ministries, departments and agencies audited on their financial management last year.

It scored 62.02% and was the only one rated as less than satisfactory, while 24 scored above 90% for an excellent rating. Seven others were rated as good with a score between 80% and 89.9%.

Its minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah (pic) said she was calling all heads of sections, warrant holders and those responsible for procurement, inventory and assets to attend a meeting on Wednesday (July 24).

"I'm giving five months for all involved to do the necessary corrective measures that have been pointed out by the audit.

"We must have a very effective monitoring process to oversee all procedures in compliance with Treasury instructions," she told reporters after opening a women leadership programme here on Tuesday (July 23).

Fatimah said the audit report must be taken seriously as a platform for the ministry to improve its financial management, including in procurement and recording of assets.

"I feel very sad as the minister. That was my first reaction. We have worked very hard but when there's a report like this, we are at the bottom while others are doing very well, it is very demoralising.

"We should learn from the audit report and don't repeat the same mistakes. We must move forward and improve our performance," she said.

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