PAC siting

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has criticized the Interior Ministry for inefficient monitoring of private security companies in the country.

The 2022 Auditor General’s report reveals that more than 440 companies failed to renew their licenses, leading to a revenue loss of over GH¢800,000.

The Chairman of PAC, James Klutse Avedzi, believes that the lives of unsuspecting persons who employ the services of these companies might be in danger.

“It also shows that the failure on your part to monitor these security companies; a private security company could be operating illegally, and the citizens will think that these people have legal licenses to operate, yet they don’t.

“So there’s a big challenge there; it’s a security matter. Companies operating illegally who have not renewed their licenses with you, but they operate. A lot of people engage these private security companies to guard their houses. If you are failing to monitor them, if it’s now being shown that most of them don’t renew their licenses, then we have a big challenge,” he said.

Meanwhile, issues of procurement breaches remain topical at the Public Accounts Committee hearings.

The management of the Ghana Immigration Service has been cited for revising two contracts to a difference of more than four million cedis without approval.

Expressing concerns about the issue, the MP for Bole Bamboi, Yusif Sulemana, said, “We have the Public Procurement Act, which has spelt out what to do if you are seeking to review an existing contract. And from what the auditors have told us, your institution failed to go by the laws. If you have breached the law, do you think you have to go free?”

Mr. Sulemana also questioned what he says are inconsistencies in the Auditor General’s recommendations regarding persons cited in its Annual reports.

This follows the Auditor General’s advice to the management of Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) to seek retrospective approval for a procurement infraction of about GH¢4 million.

Mr. Sulemana suggested to the Auditor General to recommend more severe punishments for procurement breaches.

“A process that is so subjective, transparent, that doesn’t allow Ghanaians to have fair competition when it comes to recruitment. They do so because they want to engage their boys. And that for me is unfair. Perhaps at the time you made the advertisement in 2021, I wasn’t qualified, so I couldn’t apply.

In 2022, I qualify and am ready to join the Immigration service, police service, or any of the services, but I’m not given the opportunity. Aren’t you short-changing me, aren’t you treating me unfairly? We think that going forward that should stop.”