Auditor General’s operations COVID resilient, thanks to Australia

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The Office of the Auditor General will be able to continue its important function as the last line of defence for public funds thanks to the new video conferencing equipment provided by the Australian Government.

Australian High Commissioner Dr Lachlan Strahan joined the Auditor General, Mr Peter Lokay, in Honiara this week to hand over and test drive the conferencing equipment. Ms Susanti Tedja, Audit Leader from the Audit Office of New South Wales also attended the event virtually from Sydney. The Audit Office of New South Wales is an institutional partner of Solomon Islands Office of the Auditor General.

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To manage the COVID-19 crisis, governments around the world and here in Solomon Islands are having to take drastic measures such as emergency laws, lockdowns, and travel restrictions. Government spending is occurring at great speed -to purchase emergency medical equipment and supplies, build hospitals, and provide economic stimulus.

“Auditors perform a vital function on behalf of the citizens of a country, ensuring that public funds are spent properly. Controls and checks and balances can sometimes take a back seat as resources and people are put under incredible strain” High Commissioner Strahan said when handing over the conferencing equipment to the Office of the Auditor General.

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“It is critical that government spending is accountable and transparent, even during a global crisis like COVID-19,” High Commissioner Strahan said.

Auditor General Lokay said that the support from the Australian Government would enable the Audit Office to undertake online training with its institutional partner, the Audit Office of New South Wales, Australia.

“The conferencing will ensure continued attendance at meetings, workshops and conferences outside the Solomon Islands. Most importantly, this equipment funded by Australia will enable the Audit Office to undertake audits virtually,” said Auditor General Lokay.

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