Better to late than never : PM

Published: 09:50 GMT, Jul 7, 2018 |

Allegations are levelled against the Good Governance Government for delaying the National Audit Bill, but the previous governments had not even attempted to move the Bill, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said.He was initiating the parliamentary debate on the National Audit Bill when it was taken up yesterday for debate after it was postponed several times.The National Audit Bill was a key pledge of the Good Governance Government to be adopted within the first 100 days of it assuming the power.

The National Audit Commission is an independent commission mentioned in the 19th Amendment to the Constitution. “When I became the Prime Minister in 2003, I tried to bring in the Bill, but was unable to. The former government had not even made an attempt to bring in the Bill,” the Prime Minister said.

“President Maithripala Sirisena took measures to bring in the Audit Bill. So far, no one else has done it. Everyone had the opportunity to bring in the Bill but they did not. The President also brought in the Right to Information Bill in addition to this one,” he said.

The Audit Bill was presented on several occasions and the President, Prime Minister, Ministers and the judiciary have constitutional powers. We are now working under the parliamentary powers. An audit bill is an important factor of Parliament. Some countries have a controller in this regard. Independence in an audit is very vital for the transparency and productivity of the State administration,” the Prime Minister said.

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