islamabad - The Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP), a prime audit institution, can conduct the audit of only 6 to 8 percent of the entire official record, it was learnt reliably yesterday.

“The AGP is facing financial constraints and doesn’t have money to pay for the transportation and other allowances of its audit staff; therefore it is conducting audit of only limited and selected accounts,” official sources told The Nation.

“Very frankly let me tell you that with the current available resources, the AGP is able to carry the audit of only 6 to 8 percent of the entire accounts,” an official told this correspondent while seeking anonymity.

To cope with the situation, the Auditor General of Pakistan has called the first meeting of policy board on 1st August 2016 to discuss legislation related to financial/administrative autonomy, getting more resources and enhancing AGP standards of auditing.

“If you want to conduct the audit of the entire official record then you have to adopt legislation for making AGP financially and administratively autonomous,” the official said.

Multibillion dollars new projects coming under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor will further increase the burden of work on AGP and it would require more financial resources to face the new enhanced responsibilities, the official said.

The AGP is dealing with ministries, departments, defence production institutions and corporations but is facing serious financial constraints.

“If you want transparency you have to make the AGP financially and administratively autonomous,” the official said. 

Iranian and Turkish audit courts are the best examples of autonomous bodies as these courts exercise the judicial powers, the official said adding that they can even order the arrest of anyone.

The policy board will also discuss various means to upgrade the audit standards to the international level, the official said.

The 32-member policy board includes representatives of AGP, stock exchange, chambers of commerce, NGOs and private audit departments.

Meanwhile a press release issued here stated that the Auditor General of Pakistan has called the first meeting of Policy Board on 1st August 2016 to discuss wide ranging reforms and policy of the improvement accountability and transparent governance. It may be recalled that in order to make the process of accountability and transparency more vibrant and in consonance with the fast changing system of governance, the AGP has reconstituted the policy board and included representatives of all stake holders included professional accounting bodies and civil society organizations.

The policy board will discuss the strategic plan of Auditor General of Pakistan for 2015-19, performance of audit with reference to the recoveries effected against the expenditure incurred by the department measures to approve and consolidate independence of Auditor General of Pakistan and recent initiatives and reforms introduce by the Auditor General of Pakistan to further improve the quality of audit.