Zitto who is Kigoma Urban MP demands clarification from the government on expenditure of the funds which he said wasn’t clearly indicated.
Speaking to journalists in Dodoma, Zitto said that his party has gone through the CAG report, coming up with nine suggestions to the government including enhancing its internal controls.
The 2017/2018 financial year performance audit report was released last week in Dodoma by the CAG, Prof Mussa Assad.
In the report, the CAG cited serious flaws in financial management controls.
According to Zitto, the war on corruption will only be successful if government internal controls are strengthened.
“We want to know the whereabouts of taxpayers’ money,” said the MP, questioning why the government didn’t present documents on expenditure of 800bn/- to the CAG.
He noted that last year, ACT-Wazalendo indicated that 1.5trl/-- which is equivalent to six percent of the monies collected by the government in the 2016/2017 fiscal year was not accounted for to the CAG.
Zitto claimed that after a special audit by the CAG, the government claimed to have allocated some 976bn/- for State House expenditure without providing records or statement of the specific expenditure to the CAG.
He claimed that in the fifth phase government’s budget for 2017/2018, the government indicated it would collect and spend 31.7trn/-, an amount that was endorsed by the National Assembly.
He said that the government collected 27.7trilion/- from its revenue and non-revenue sources, loans from within and outside the country and grants from development partners.
The MP claimed that the government failed to collect 4trillion/-, which is 13 percent of the entire budget, as it was in the 2016/17 fiscal year.
He further claimed that the CAG shows that 26.9trillion/- was released from government coffers for expenditure, hence 800bn/- out of the collected 27.7 trillion/- is nowhere to be seen and wasn't audited by auditors.
He said: “It is important to note that according to the CAG, the collection of 4.5 trillion/- wasn't entered into the main government's coffers."
According to Zitto, weakness of Treasury financial systems is one among issues that have been well explained in the CAG report, where the difference was 1.5trillion/- in the 2016/17 financial year.
He further unveiled that 678bn/- from other authorities was taken by the Paymaster General, noting that the CAG report for 2017/18 indicates that “the government has been spending the ring fenced money.”
Zitto claimed that the 2017/18 CAG report shows that 678bn/- which was collected by the Tanzania Revenue Authority on behalf of other institutions wasn't given to the intended institutions “and instead wasn't seen during auditing as required by law.”
The money which was taken by the Treasury includes 169bn/- of Tanzania Railways Limited, 168bn/- of cashewnut stakeholders and 16bn/- of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), the MP added.
The latest observations by the Kigoma Urban MP have resonance with an earlier dispute on the use of Sh.1.5trillion (at times also reported as 1.7trillion) also raised by Zitto Kabwe on a previous CAG report and took the legislature close to one year to finish the business.
In April last year Rombo MP Joseph Selasini (Chadema) was reiterating that the government must look into the Sh1.5 trillion that is flagged as unaccounted for in the 2016/17 report by the Controller and Auditor General (CAG).
The issue was first raised first by Zitto Kabwe when the report was delivered to Parliament.
After the MP’s comments, President Magufuli said the money was never stolen “as had been reported in the media.”
The president’s comments echoed clarifications by Deputy Finance Minister Ashatu Kijaji, who had said the missing money was the aggregated sum of Sh697 billion in Treasury bonds, Sh687 billion in receivables and about Sh 202 billion collected on behalf of the Zanzibar tax office.
Before the budgetary estimates for 2018/2019 were presented in the National Assembly, the CAG and the legislature finally ended the matter by affirming it was a technical hiatus in audit presentation.