Auditor General's New Report
The Auditor General, Alastair Swarbrick, made public today (Thursday, 25 October 2012) a report on the status of financial accountability reporting in the Cayman Islands Government as at October 2012. The report is an update on six previous reports issued by the Office of the Auditor General on this subject; the latest being December 2011. The report assesses financial reporting in government entities and at the consolidated level.
In this latest update, the Auditor General has confirmed that progress has continued and that significant steps have been taken by Government towards more timely reporting.
The report states that all government entities submitted their 30 June 2012 financial statements to his Office by the 31 August 2012 deadline. The Auditor General also reported that there are only 17 audits from 2005 through 2011 that remain to be completed by his Office, effectively reducing the backlog of audits to a point where it should not impact the ability of the Government to become current.
The report includes information on improvements in the quality of financial reporting, while saying there is still a lot of work to do. For example, only two ministry and portfolio financial statements have received an unqualified opinion for the 2010?11 fiscal year so far.
"There has been very good progress since my Office first reported on this matter in 2008 and when I started reporting in December 2010 on the timeliness of reporting and clearing the backlog. I continue to be concerned about the quality of some of the financial information my auditors have been given to audit," said Mr. Swarbrick.
"To be useful for legislators and the public, financial reports need to be credible and informative, meaning that they present a fair and true picture of the financial position, and have information available with the financial statements to explain what the results mean. There still remains a significant effort by government entities to achieve this objective that I have described in my latest report."
At the consolidated level, the Auditor General reported that at the date of his report he is unable to provide an opinion on the 2010-11 financial statements because of a lack of information provided to his auditors.
Regarding the timeliness of tabling annual reports in the Legislative Assembly, the Auditor General reported that he still has a significant concern. "The delays", he said, "diminished the usefulness of the information for Members of the Legislative Assembly and the wider public, thereby undermining effective accountability."
The report is available on the Office of the Auditor General website at: www.auditorgeneral.gov.kywww.auditorgeneral.gov.ky. More information regarding this report can be obtained by contacting Martin Ruben at the Office of the Auditor General at (345) 244?3206.