The commission of inquiry into local government councils and related matters will resume hearings with the opening of its ninth-weekly session this morning after a month’s break due to the feast of Eid Al-Adha.
During this session, the commission will continue hearing testimonies from witnesses from the central government. The commission plans to hold its hearing on local government procurement processes during the session.
During the break from hearings, the LGCI Secretariat remained open and commissioners and staff continued to be engaged in work-related activities. Among other things, the Investigations Unit continued with its engagement with potential witnesses to further investigate assertions made in statements received, interviews, or the oral testimony of witnesses during the past public hearings.
The unit also served notices to recall witnesses as directed by the legal team. Secretariat staff embarked on the usual document review to assist the commission to inquire into the conduct of all local government councils and circumstances surrounding the loans acquired for and on behalf of a local government council between May 2018 to January 2023.
The legal team and staff are currently working to ascertain whether applicable policies and procedures were followed in securing such loan; the persons or groups of persons directly involved in securing such loans; and the funds used for the repayment of such loans;
Review of withdrawals of diverse sums of money from local government council bank accounts; are also part of preparations for further hearings.
The commission will look into the landed properties of the councils and ascertain whether applicable procedures and laws were followed.
The commission is authorised to investigate the increment of salaries and allowances of staff and elected officials of local councils between May 2018 and January 2023 and ascertain whether such increments were done in line with applicable procedures and laws. The commission will also look into the general staffing of the council.