One of Ghana’s most financially starved government agencies, the Ghana Railway Company Limited, is said to be struggling to trace an amount of GHc25, 404 belonging to the company.
This was revealed in the Auditor General’s report which covered accounts and operations of the company at the end of December 2009.
It is unknown whether over five years on; the company has been able to retrieve the amount.
According to the report, the company received a total cash amount of GHc3, 422,574.76 at the end of 2009, out of which GHc3, 397,170.47 was sent to the bank “leaving a balance of GHc 25,404.29 which could not be traced.”
The report noted that “management always assured us that internal control policies are being complied with and the cases were under investigation yet the situation still persist. These imply that the debts are becoming irrecoverable. We recommended that management should pursue this case seriously.”
Railway workers strike
The report comes on the back of recent strike by workers of the company to demand the payment of their salary arrears.
The Achimota railway station
The report further observed that the company did not pay statutory deductions such as SSNIT contributions for its staff.
The report said the action has resulted in the SSNIT contributions accruing withholding taxes and P.A.Y.E deductions amounting to GHc9, 465,235.52.
The Auditor General in the report urged management of the company “to take steps to pay these statutory debts or negotiate the terms of payment, since “the company stands to face imposition of heavy penalties, if such is not done immediately.”
Maintenance of Assets
The report also noted that facilities of the company have “declined massively and the entire structures are dilapidated without any intervention. Buildings, stores, vehicles and many others are left to ruin at the mercy of the weather.”
“The continuing keeping of the items exposed them to danger. Management should make effort to undertake regular maintenance of the assets to prevent further deterioration and also create hygienic, safe and clean working environment.
“Management agreed to our observation but reiterated that the situation came about as a result of weak financial position of the company,” the report added.