Auditor General Finds Discrepancies in Montserrat Ferry Service Operation
The Office of the Auditor General presented to the Legislative Assembly today a report on a Special Financial and Compliance Audit on the Montserrat Ferry Service Operations.
The review assessed whether the relevant systems and processes were in place to ensure the effective and efficient operation of the Montserrat Ferry Service and that activities, financial transactions and information comply, in all material respects, with relevant standards and GoM policies and regulations, said a statement from the OAG.
The ferry service is currently being delivered by Jaden Sun Inc. on one-year contracts since late 2016. However, Jenny Tours on Antigua and Jemmotte Services on Montserrat are the booking agents. All of the systems with the agents and the Access Division were assessed as part of the process.
The Office of the Auditor General found it “could not obtain reasonable assurance on submitted documentation as they were not in keeping with applicable financial reporting framework. Additionally, a number of supporting documents and budgets were either not submitted or were reported as missing.”
The report also noted that revenue collected by Jenny Tours was not being consistently deposited in a timely manner. “In some instances, deposits were done several weeks after collection. There were differences between the sales reported on the online ferry system and the each agent’s reported sales.”
The OAG provided several recommendations which include:
(1) Deposits should be carried out daily and all cash receipts should be deposited in a timely manner, as daily deposits reduce the risk of fraud.
(2) Separate sales reports should be generated for both morning and evening journeys to facilitate reconciling the agents reports to the online ferry system.
Subsequent to the Audit Office fieldwork, several developments were brought to their attention to include that the financial transactions of the ferry service will be incorporated into the GoM accounting system and will be reflected in the 2019/20 Public Accounts.
The full audit report highlights several other findings and recommendations which will bring significant improvements once implemented.
Read the report here…Special Audit – Montserrat Ferry Service Operations July 2020