Auditor-General reforms needed in corruption fight: Sandar Min

By SU MYAT MON | FRONTIER

YANGON — Daw Sandar Min (NLD, Seikgyikanaungto-1) has flagged reforms to the regional Auditor-General’s Office, telling the Yangon assembly on Tuesday that the body was at present unable to address its own shortcomings.

The MP’s proposal, approved for discussion next Friday, would direct the Auditor-General’s office to report on shortfalls in tax collection and investigate civil servants found to be misusing government funds — including within the auditor’s office itself.

“According to my experience, there has been inaccurate reporting of the education department’s expenditures and also misuse of the funds reclaimed by the Auditor-General’s Office, without any punishment [for those responsible],” she said.

“We are asking for detailed reporting now that there is a new government and Auditor-General, so we can determine what action to take.”

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Daw Sandar Min, who serves as head of the Yangon Parliament’s Finance, Planning and Economic Committee, said the government needed could only fund the city’s development if tax collection was improved, which depended on the Auditor-General’s Office fulfilling its constitutional mandate.

Citizenship crackdown

Also on Tuesday, Yangon Parliament MPs were told the government would conduct an investigation into the production of fake identity documents and prosecute officials accused of abetting the practice in line with the 1982 Citizenship Law.

U Hla Htay (NLD, Mingalar Taung Nyunt-1) cited the 2014 Census to claim that over 1.4 million people across the country were not in possession of identity cards.

“It is terrible that ineligible people get ID cards,” said U Zaw Aye Maung (ANP), the regional assembly’s Rakhine Ethnic Affairs Minister. “If it happens, it directly goes against the sovereignty of a country.”

Rakhine politicians have long claimed that corrupt immigration officials have colluded to provide falsified citizenship documents to Myanmar’s stateless Rohingya population, estimated to number more than 1.1 million people.

The Arakan National Party has pledged to block any pathway to citizenship for the Rohingya, claiming the population are illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.

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