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[Media Release - MFEM] Strengthening Public Financial Management

OFFICE OF THE FINANCIAL SECRETARY



The COVID-19 pandemic is presenting unprecedented challenges for us all, from its health, economic and financial effects on our everyday lives, to its impacts on the government’s Public Financial Management (PFM). In this context, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Management (MFEM) recognises the need to tighten up its oversight and management of all public finances.

The current criminal investigations related to alleged misuse of public funds uncovered within the Ministry of Police, Business Trade Investment Board (BTIB) and previously the Ministry of Justice is a clear warning that suspects will be investigated.

The MFEM is carrying out internal audit reviews across government agencies with an initial focus on those agencies that are handling cash receipts over the counter to ensure that payments are receipted properly and not misappropriated. Additionally, MFEM’s implementation of FMIS, a centralised financial management information system, will require all government payments and receipts to go through a single Treasury account. This will improve control on spending as well as receipting.

PFM is a responsibility of everyone and therefore equally vital for members of the public to report any knowledge of misuse of public funds, request for a receipt when you pay for any government services and where practical pay using EFTPOS or electronic means instead of cash.

You can reach the MFEM Internal Audit on mfem.ia@cookislands.gov.ck

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Released 07 October 2020


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