CMAC Preliminary Audit Results Are Positive

A preliminary report on the audit of the Cambodian Mine Ac­tion Center’s use of donor nation funds showed no evidence of embezzlement, according to a UNDP official.

“With regard to financial matters, there is no problem,” UNDP Resi­dent Representative Domi­nique McAdams said.

The highly anticipated audit follows an earlier examination of CMAC’s use of Cambodian government funds. That report re­vealed widespread financial mismanagement and misallocation of government funds, which account for about 2 percent of the agency’s total budget.

McAdams declined to comment on the audit specifics until its final version is released next week. The preliminary re­sults were not released to the public.

AusAID Director Bill Costello said Tuesday he also would not talk about the audit until its final release. He did say that donors met with the auditors Saturday to review the audit results.

“[The meeting] was held just to give us a sense of the magnitude of the problems in terms of what the audit found,” he said.

Though generally positive, the audit did find some “minor” management problems, according to one senior CMAC official.

Those problems had nothing to do with the agency’s use of donor funds, the official said, but he declined to elaborate.

US Ambassador Kent Wiede­mann also acknowledged there were some criticisms of CMAC management in the report but said Tuesday the audit may have judged relatively minor management practices too strongly.

It remains unclear if the release of this preliminary information is going to encourage donors to re­sume the flow of money to CMAC, which is facing at least a partial shutdown by the end of October without donor funds, which make up more than 90 percent of the agency’s budget.

Three donor nations suspended their contributions completely and others re-evaluated their funding to CMAC after reports of the agency’s financial problems surfaced.

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