Tribunal of Accounts of the Union
External control, in the charge of the National Congress, will be exercised with the help of the Tribunal of Accounts of the Union
The Ministers of the Tribunal of Accounts of the Union will be nominated Brazilians satisfying the following requisites:
- more than thirty five years of age but less than sixty five years;
- moral fitness and irreproachable reputation;
- vast juridical, accounting, economic, financial and public administration knowledge;
- more than ten years of experience or actual professional activity requiring the knowledge mentioned in the earlier clause;
he Ministers of the Tribunal of Accounts shall be chosen one third by the President of the Republic, with the approval of the Federal Senate, with two being alternately from amongst the auditors and members of the Public Ministry attached to the Tribunal of Accounts, indicated in the three lists by the Tribunal according to the criteria of seniority and merit; and two thirds by the National Congress.
After having been appointed and having taken possession , the ministers will only lose their office through judicial sentence, exoneration on request, or reasons of conflict on the basis of the earlier article. The President and Vice President will be elected by their equals to serve for the period of one calendar year.
The ministers shall enjoy the following guarantees, prerogatives and honorariums:
- Post to be held for life, and cannot be lost except through judicial sentence.
- Immovability except for reasons of public interest.
- Irreducibility of honorariums subject to general taxes, including income tax.
- Compulsory retirement at 70 years of age or through professionally verified disability after thirty years of public service, in all cases with full honorariums.
- Honorariums identical to those of the Ministers of the Federal Office of Resources.
The accounting, financial, budgetary, operational and asset related auditing of the Union and those of the organizations of direct and indirect administration, as concerns legality, legitimacy, economizing, grants of subsidies, releasing of incomes, will be exercised by the National Congress, through external control and by the system of internal control of each Power.
The Tribunal of Accounts has exclusive and particular jurisdiction over all persons and goods subject to its competence, which includes all those who receive shares, money and the goods of the Union or for which it answers as well as for which there are express legal provisions, the administrators of the organizations of the direct administration and other entities.
The jurisdiction of the Tribunal of Accounts also extends to the beneficiaries, guarantors and representatives of those accountable
The area of responsibility of the Tribunal of Accounts stems from its status as an auxiliary body of the National Congress for the exercise of external control, consisting of the appraisal of the accounts of the President of the Republic, the discharge of the functions of financial and budgetary auditing of the accounts of the administrative units of the three powers of the Union and the appraisal of the regularity of the accounts of administrators and others accountable for goods or public shares and of the legality of the initial grants of retirement pensions, reforms and allowances.
External control, in the charge of the National Congress, will be exercised with the help of the Tribunal of Accounts of the Union, whose functions are:
- Evaluation of the accounts rendered annually by the President of the Republic, through prior auditorâ€™s report which should be drawn up within sixty days from its receipt.
- Examining the accounts of the administrators and others accountable for the money, goods, public shares of direct and indirect administration, including foundations and companies set up and maintained by the Federal Public Authority, and the accounts of those who cause the loss, misuse or other irregularities which result in harm to the public exchequer;
- Assessment for the purposes of records, the legality of the action of admission of personnel for holding any post in direct or indirect administration, including foundations set up and maintained by the Public Authority, except those appointments for the posts under judicial decision for commissioning, as well as the legality of the grant of civil and military retirements and pensions, preserving the later improvements that may not alter the legal basis of the act of granting.
- Carry out, at their own initiative, or at the instance of the House of Deputies, the Federal Senate, technical or research Commissions; examination and financial, budgetary, operational and patrimonial auditing in the administrative units of the Judicial, Executive and Legislative Powers, and other organizations referred to in II;
- Oversee the national accounts of transnational enterprises in whose capital stock the Union participates, directly or indirectly, in terms of the constitutive treaty;
- Inspecting the application of any resources transferred by the Union through agreements, settlements or other instruments of the State, the Federal District or the Municipality;
- Delivering information solicited by the National Congress, by any of its Houses, or by any of its respective Commissions, on accounting, financial, budgetary, operational, patrimonial and asset related auditing and on the results of audits and inspections carried out;
- Apply the sanctions envisaged in law on those responsible, in case of illegalities of expenditures, or irregularities of accounts, which would establish, among other things, the proportional penalties in relation to the damage caused to the exchequer;
- Assign a time period so that the organization or entity adopt the necessary measures for the exact compliance of the law, if it verifies illegality;
- Suspend, if it is not attended to, the execution of the impugned act, communicating the decision to the House of Deputies and to the Federal Senate;
- Inform the competent Power on the irregularities or verified abuses.
Audit Procedures And Functions
The financial and budgetary auditing which will be exercised on the accounts of the administrative units of the three powers of the Union, has as its objective, the overseeing of persons subject to the jurisdiction of the Tribunal of Accounts, according to the provisions stipulated in arts. 33 and 34 and the inspection of accounts of those accountable.
For the exercise of financial and budgetary auditing, the Tribunal of Accounts:
I. Shall take cognizance, through their publication in the official gazette, of the annual budgetary report, of the various yearly investment budgets, of the opening of additional credits corresponding to complementary functions.
II. Shall receive a copy of the documents which are enumerated as follows:
a. Acts relating to financial programming of disbursements;
b. Balance sheets of incomes and expenditure;
c. Report of the administrative bodies in charge of internal budgetary and financial control;
d. Role of those accountable;
III. Shall ask for, at any time, information relating to the administering of credits and other items which it may deem necessary.
IV. Shall proceed with the inspections it considers necessary.
1. The inspections will be carried out by officials of the financial and budgetary bodies of the Tribunal of Accounts, through a contract, by specialised firms or by specialists in financial audit.
2. No proceedings, document or information can be hidden from the Tribunal of Accounts under any pretext.
3. In case of refusal, the Tribunal of Accounts shall fix a period for the presentation of documentation or desired information, and in case not heeded, it will communicate the fact to the authority at the ministerial level for the necessary measures.
4. If for any reason, it cannot be heeded, the fact will be communicated to the National Congress and the authorities responsible will be subjected to the penalties applicable.
5. The Tribunal of Accounts shall communicate to the competent authorities of the three powers the result of the studies and inspections it may carry out informing the Executive Power and the National Congress on the irregularities and abuses that it might verify.
The Tribunal of Accounts, which is an auxiliary body of the National Congress for the external control on the financial and budgetary administration of the Union, has its main office in the Capital of the Republic and jurisdiction through the whole national territory. The Tribunal of Accounts is made up of nine ministers. In the Tribunal of Accounts shall function as an integral part of its organization,
The Tribunal of Accounts can be divided into First Chamber and Second Chamber, through the deliberations of an absolute majority of its permanent members.
1. Each chamber is made up of 4 ministers who will fill the posts for a period of 2 years.
2. The President of the Office will not participate in the composition of the chambers.
3. The First Chamber will be presided over by the Vice President of the Office and the Second Chamber by the seniormost of the ministers which are part of it.
4. With the approval of the Office, a change or voluntary shift of ministers from one chamber to another is permitted.
Administrative Functions And Miscellaneous
The duties of carrying out the external control of the Financial and Budgetary Administration of the Union will be exercised by the Tribunal in a decentralized manner and through the general secretariat, whose duties will be distributed among financial and budgetary auditing bodies and auxiliary services.
The units of budgetary and financial auditing will have under their charge the inspection of accounting information of the administrative units of the three powers of the Union, the proceedings of the records of appraisal of the accounts of administrators and of those who are responsible, and the carrying out of inspections deemed necessary by the Tribunal of Accounts.
The units in charge of auxiliary services shall have the necessary functions for the responsibilities of the internal services of the Tribunal, of its General Secretariat and the Public Ministry.
The management and leadership of the bodies of the General Secretariat will be entrusted exclusively to personnel who make up the same.
The Tribunal of Accounts shall have its own team for the personnel of the General Secretariat with the organization and functions which might be fixed by law or through internal rules.