Public audits can be used as a tool to identify and tackle inefficiency, mismanagement, waste, and fight corruption if lawmakers take them seriously and act on their recommendations. For the fiscal year, 2017, taxpayers lost more than $1 billion in overpayments to contractors, payments for goods without any vouchers, and payments for good that were not delivered, according to the Auditor General’s report. Public audits are meant to provide lawmakers and taxpayers with an assessment of how well public agencies delivered public services, whether they have operated within their budgets, and more importantly, whether they have executed their functions consistent with good public financial management practices.
Budget decisions should reflect our collective values, priorities, and needs. Thus, putting together a budget should be based on evidence and facts. The Budget & Policy Institute works to make budget decisions — and the budget process itself — more accessible and easier to understand, so as to encourage citizens’ participation in the debate and foster policies that work for all Guyanese, especially low- and middle-income individuals and families.