Lise Rakner

Professor at University of Bergen and Affiliated Research Professor
The study explores the role of Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) in the management of public funds in Malawi, Tanzania and Uganda. Weak public financial management have adverse consequences for poverty reduction. The Supreme Audit Institutions are responsible for independently reporting on public expenditure and are key institutions for oversseing the budget process. How do Africa Auditor Generals perform in this task? What characterises their cooperation with other government and non-governmental institutions? What are the main restraints facing auditor generals in fulfilling their mandate? The compararive study of Supreme Audit Institutions in Malawi, Tanzania and Uganda is commissioned by Norad. The study finds that the auditor generals' mandate, autonomy and capacity is restrained in all three countries by formal and informal political pratices vesting a large degree of power in the presidential office. This negatively affects the public confidence in the institutions and their overall performance. The result is that the audit cycle in all three countries in part becomes a cosmetic excercise which undermines sound public financial management.