AHPETC Hires External Accounting Firm, Says it Will Clarify “Misconceptions”

Posted on May 2 2015 - 4:35pm by Benita Aw

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Aljunied-Hougang-Punggol East Town Council has hired an external accounting firm to clean up its accounts.

The accounting firm will also advise AHPETC on measures to strengthen its financial management processes.

This was said in a statement by Workers’ Party chairman, Sylvia Lim.

Ms Lim also said that AHPETC will clarify “some misconceptions that have been circulated” from the AGO Report and Parliamentary debate.

In February this year, the AGO had flagged major lapses in “governance and compliance” in the management of AHPETC.

More accusations of financial mismanagement by AHPETC were further raised in parliament.

The government had indicated it would withhold grants amounting to some S$14 million to AHPETC if it did not “clean up its act”.

The Ministry of National Development had also applied to the court to appoint independent accountants to probe AHPETC’s finances.

This is AHPETC Chairman Sylvia Lim’s statement on the appointment:

INTERIM UPDATE ON FOLLOW-UPS ON AGO REPORT

“I hope this message finds you well.

“You would have noted media reports and Parliamentary debates concerning the Auditor-General’s Office’s (AGO) Report on its audit of Aljunied-Hougang-Punggol East Town Council (AHPETC) released in February 2015. The AGO had found some lapses and weaknesses that needed to be addressed.

“You will soon be receiving a letter from us giving you details of some key points from the AGO Report and Parliamentary debate, and clarifying some misconceptions that have been circulated. Due to the importance of the subject, we have taken some time to prepare this letter.

“Meanwhile, in this short interim note, I wish to inform you of two major tasks that AHPETC has since been following up on. First, on 3 March 2015, we appointed an external accounting firm to assist AHPETC in cleaning up its earlier accounts and also to give advice on strengthening its internal controls and processes in financial management, and on internal audit matters. Secondly, we are working hard on completing our annual audits, with a view to filing our audited FY 2013/14 accounts by 30 June 2015 and FY 2014/15 accounts by 31 August 2015. These tasks are critical to complete.

“The past months have been challenging, but AHPETC remains undaunted.

“At the heart of it all, AHPETC’s Members of Parliament from the Workers’ Party are mindful of our duty to be accountable to you, the residents who have put us in office to serve. You have supported us, and we will do our best despite the challenges we face. Thank you for your concern and understanding.”

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