Detailed account of Barbuda recovery funds in two weeks

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A full accounting of monies spent for relief and on-going reconstruction in Barbuda, for the period September 2017 to April 2018, will be presented to the government within two weeks.
That’s’ according to Melford Nicholas, the information minister, who disclosed during yesterday’s post-Cabinet briefing, that a previous accounting that was undertaken for the five months from September 2017 through January 2018 was inadequate.
The National Office of Disaster, (NODS), the executing agency for the Barbuda recovery efforts, contracted an accounting firm to handle the exercise.
“We felt that it was incomplete in the sense of the period of time in which the accountant had prepared the report was unsatisfactory. We felt that from September to January of this year was not the full scope of what we wanted and we felt that the firm may have been misdirected in respect of the period in time of the report,” Nicholas said.
He said the firm was given redirections and was asked to collaborate with the Treasury Department through the Ministry of Finance, which handled a great deal of the expenditure as approved by NODS for the hurricane relief.
The information minister was asked about the possibility of publishing an interim report, in light of the fact that seven months have passed without the publication of a single document accounting for money that has been spent since September 2017 and given that some Barbudans and opposition members have been demanding such a report.
Nicholas explained that this was not possible because the government was looking to make public a report which went further than the amount of monies spent.
“We expect to have a full accounting in terms of saying, from this donor agency these resources were received, this was how it was disbursed, this was the balance …. That is what we expect to see and not merely NODS’ financial position,” Nicholas said.

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