(Photo Credit: GIS/Mr. Ronnielle Frazer)
The Internal Audit Department has disclosed that no response was provided to the department when they proposed a policy to deal with the use of Government vehicles.
The disclosure of the silence on the matter was made by Director of the Internal Audit Department (DIA), Dorea Corea, when she appeared before the Standing Finance Committee in April.
During the DIA’s appearance before the committee, Deputy Speaker and Territorial Representative, Hon. Neville Smith queried whether there was a policy in place for the use of Government vehicles.
In response, Corea explained that in the past, a draft Vehicle Usage Policy was developed and submitted to the Ministries for comments. However, she noted that no feedback was received. She further stated that the department is currently conducting an audit of Government assets, which will be incorporated.
Efforts to streamline the use of Government vehicles are not new. In fact, as part of a cost cutting initiative in 2010, a Motor Vehicle Procurement and Use Policy was approved by Cabinet, which stipulated stringent enforcement as it relates to the misuse of official vehicles.
The policy, forbidding Government vehicles from being used in private capacities, became effective July 1, 2010.
In that year, civil servants who were driving Government vehicles were given the option to purchase those vehicles as the Government implemented a cost cutting measure.
In laying out the reason for the cost cutting initiative, the then government stated that in 2010 there were approximately 26 Government-owned vehicles valued at an estimated market value of $250,000; and the servicing and gasoline of which cost Government some $57,538.00.