The State Audit Office expects a breakthrough in the Ministry of Education and Research in the sphere of accounting

8/16/2004 | 12:00 AM

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TALLINN, 16 August 2004 - The State Audit Office finds that the Annual Accounts of the Ministry of Education and Research as a single institution for the year 2003 fail to comply with the requirements of law, and expects the Minister and the Secretary General to apply vigorous measures to render accounting, financial management and financial supervision more efficient.

Being based on the audit conducted by the auditors of ELSS, the State Audit Office concludes that the accountants of the Ministry of Education and Research have violated several accounting principles; for example, accounting entries have been made without source documents. Many mistakes and problems are recurring, even though the State Audit Office has highlighted the mistakes in its earlier audit reports.

Sale Ajalik, the Audit Manager, hopes that Jaan Kallas, the new Secretary General who acceded to the office at the beginning of this year, will employ measures to achieve a qualitative change in the sphere of accounting and financial management as early as in the year 2004.

Although the Ministry has commenced additional stocktaking of assets possessed by institutions governed by public law, a part of fixed assets owned by the state still has not been inventoried or disclosed in the Annual Accounts. While stocktaking the assets possessed by institutions governed by public law, attention should be paid to the actual value of the assets, as well. The Ministry may revaluate fixed assets, which have been acquired in 1995 and earlier, in accordance with the fair value thereof until the end of the year 2005.

The State Audit Office also found that in the year 2003 the Ministry of Education and Research lacked a uniform procedure and an internal regulation for allocation of funds which have been prescribed to be distributed as grants in the state budget, and for supervising the use of these funds in accordance with their designated purpose.

Therefore, several youth societies received grants in 2003 but failed to submit a report on the use of the funds received and on the results accomplished.

The Ministry has failed to establish clear and uniform requirements on such reports, wherefore the contents of reports submitted ranged between just one page and voluminous overviews to which copies of accounts of charges and printouts of accounts were appended.

Pursuant to agreements made with grantees, the Ministry is entitled to supervise the purposeful use of the grants received, but according to the data available to the State Audit Office, the Ministry has checked the use of grants at the places of activity of grantees on four occasions only, even though grants have been allocated to hundreds of persons and entities.

The Ministry has violated the Public Procurement Act, pursuant to which public procurement must be organised for purchasing services, if the estimated cost of the procurement is 100,000 kroons or more. For example, 413,028 kroons have been paid to the Amos OÜ Law Offices for legal services.

The State Audit Office has forwarded to the Ministry of Education and Research its suggestions on how to improve the situation.

Sven Soiver
Press Representative of State Audit Office
Telephone: (372) 640 0787
GSM: (372) 53 414464
E-mail: [email protected]

  • Posted: 8/16/2004 12:00 AM
  • Last Update: 10/1/2015 10:18 AM
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