State Audit Bureau
The SAI is established by an act of parliament/Legislative body. Head of state appoints head of SAI. The appointment of head of SAI can be terminated by an act from head of state. There are no qualification prescribed for appointment of the head of SAI. There is no fixed tenure or age limit for the appointed head of SAI.
The various conditions of service of the Head of the SAI to secure independence are:
- Special procedure for appointment
- Special procedure for removal
- Control over resources/budget
- Immunity/protection from actions by others in its performance of duties
- Independence to frame workplans
- Eligible for any other appointment under Government
Audit Bureau is responsible directly to the emir (the legislature). All Ministries and other Governmental bodies (Executive bodies) are under Audit Bureau control. The SAI has financial independence and Head of the State has the right to decide on SAI budget. There is no mechanism to secure accountability of SAI.
The SAI's jurisdiction extends to the followings and there are no limitations imposed on SAI's.:
- Federal Government
- Provincial and local governments
- Bodies not owned but substantially funded by the governments
- Banks whose capital forms part of the Federal, Provincial and local government and autonomous bodies substantially funded by the government.
- Entities owned or controlled by the Federal, Provincial and local governments and other entities owned or controlled by such government owned or controlled entities.
- State joint ventures with foreign agencies and other enterprises.
- Audit of Receipt of the Government.
- Concession granted by the Government to agencies for exploitation of public resources
The SAI has powers of requisitioning all records of the auditee departments/organisations to discharge its mandate. The SAI has powers to enforce or initiate enforcement action to secure access to needed records which are not produced. SAI can seal, seize and search documents and other related items where it is considered necessary for its audit and inspection. It does not have power to seek testimonials of the persons concerned. It cannot seek co-operation of persons other than agencies subject to audit and inspection.
The SAI has powers of instructing government investigating agencies to perform activities considered necessary. It has no authority to re-examine its own adjudication. SAI does not have powers to decide on claims of interested persons in connection with official actions, duties and behaviour of persons subject to audit and inspection. It does not have the authority to dispense with, in whole or part, the audit of Federal, Provincial and local Governments accounts and other related matters.
The SAI has no powers to take punitive action and/or impose surcharges. SAI has powers to access the computer systems of the auditees and the power to download and use electronic data either in site or off site. It has power to review the development of computer systems by auditees and suggest controls. They do not have any role in the appointment and supervision of other external auditors engaged by the auditees for meeting any statutory requirements.
Audit Procedures And Functions
The SAI prescribes Financial, Compliance, Performance & EDP audit in its scope of audit. The power to perform these audits are mandated by the law governing the SAI. The State Audit Bureau exercises all types of financial control on the state's funds and the funds of the bodies subject to its control (all Governmental bodies, Public entities, Companies in which the state or any of Public entities is holding not less than 51% of its capital). SAI conducts Pre-audit, Concurrent audit and Special audit. The State Audit Bureau exercises and auditing of all draft agreements and contracts concluded by the bodies. The Bureau shall examine and audit the accounts and activities of any body not subject to its control in accordance with the provisions of this Law if a special assignment has been issued by the Bureau to this effect by the Emir or by a decision of the council of Ministers.
Procedure followed for each main type audit conducted by SAI are:
Pre-audit-: Auditing of all draft agreement and contracts concluded by the bodies to its control. Auditing all periodical supply contracts and tenancy contracts.
Concurrent Audit-: The President of Bureau delegate from technical staff to attend the meeting of different tender committees to ensure that the procedures to be followed in accordance with the financial rules have been followed.
Special audit-: Special assignment issued to the Bureau by the Emir or council of Ministers.
SAI does not discharge judicial functions. SAI has to follow specific standards, practices and guidelines in conducting audit and reporting. SAI can consult and/or collaborate with other countries/SAIs and international organisations on matters relating to audit e.g-: The State Audit Bureau is member of training committee at ARABOSAI. SAI cannot engage consultants and/or obtain professional services in conducting audit, it is confined only to Bureau Staff Members. SAI can report on acts that infringe upon State economic interests like mass embezzlement of State assets, serious losses and wastes.
SAI requires that all fraud embezzlement must be reported mandatorly by the auditees. SAI has powers to oversee the ultimate disposal of such cases. SAI has a role on the disposal or the action taken on audit findings. It does not present an interim report before rendering an annual report on the examination of the closing of accounts of Federal, Provincial and Local governments. It has no powers to share its audit reports with the public and media. In the case of Financial Statement audits, SAI has no powers to amend accounts. SAI has an advisory role.
SAI is constituted as an audit office with monocratic status i.e. with an Auditor General or equivalent as head. The president of the state Audit Bureau has the status of a Minister (Bureau Law). The state Audit Bureau has to exercise control on the state's funds. It is also involved in the day to day functioning of the SAI. The SAI has no powers to engage external auditors/agencies/consultants as required.
Administrative Functions And Miscellaneous
SAI can expend resources budgeted independently. It has full independence in forming its workplan. The State Audit Bureau has powers to choose staff. SAI is not subjected to an independent audit. SAI is not required to submit a report on its activities