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Grant Thornton contract goes to Attorney General – to review demands by Kabimba, Kalaba, Imboela over auditing of defence forces, security wings

By NATION REPORTER

THE matter in which Wynter Kabimba, Harry Kalaba and Saboi Imboela had written to the Ministry of Finance demanding an explanation in the hiring of Grant Thornton and Price Water House Coopers (PWC), the private firms to audit the country’s Defence and Security Wings has been referred to the Attorney General for review.

Acting Secretary to the Treasury Kennedy Musonda has told the trio in a letter dated 2nd December, 2022 that the Ministry of Finance acknowledged receipt of the letter from Mr Kabimba, Mr Kalaba and Ms Imboela demanding that government should furnish them with details of the contract failure to which, they would commence legal action.

The Ministry of Finance has contracted the services of Grant Thornton and Price Water House Coopers (PWC), the two private audit firms to undertake audit services for the country’s Defence and Security Wings against the professional advice of the Office of the Auditor General (OAG).

But now, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning says the Treasury through the Attorney General shall be reviewing the matter the three opposition political leaders have raised over the hiring of private audit firms, Grant Thornton and PWC.

This follows a letter of demand by Wynter Kabimba SC, the leader of the Economic Front (EF), Ms Imboela, leader of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and Mr Kalaba of the Citizens First to furnish the nation with the details of the contract. 

Mr Kabimba, Mr Kalaba and Ms Imboela had on November 28, 2022 written to the Ministry of Finance, which had signed the contract with the two private auditing firms threatening litigation if Mr Felix Nkulukusa was not going to explain the controversial hiring of Grant Thornton and PWC.

And yesterday, acting Secretary to the Treasury Kennedy Musonda in a short and terse letter to Mr Kabimba stated that the Ministry of Finance was in receipt of the letter of demand and that the Attorney General would be reviewing the matters so raised.

“The Treasury wishes to acknowledge receipt of your letter. Kindly be advised that the Office of the Auditor General will review and guide on the matter you have raised, Mr Musonda said.

Mr Kabimba and his counterparts from Citizens First and NDC stated that Mr Nkulkusa had confirmed that the awarding of the contract to Grant Thornton and PWC was by way of selective bidding and was without the authority of the Auditor General.

The Ministry of Finance was given a seven day ultimatum to respond to the demands of the three political parties’ failure to which the trio would have no choice but to commence judicial review proceedings in the High Court.

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