The Auditor General’s Department is at odds with Jamaica Customs over its bunkering operations and private bonded warehouses.
While Auditor General Pamela Munroe Ellis insists there’re serious concerns in how customs manages its control processes about an Entity called BFO1.
However, addressing yesterday’s meeting of Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee, Commissioner of Customs, Velma Ricketts Walker disagreed with that assertion, saying their processes were near perfect.
Wayne Walker tells us more:
According to an Auditor General’s report, violations of law could have resulted in more than two billion dollars in financial exposure and more than 500 million in uncollected revenue.
In addressing the PAC yesterday, Mrs. Munroe-Ellis says it’s now up to Customs to address the issue.
The AGD carried out the audit after a whistleblower claimed that Bunker Fuel Operator 1 used its status as a Special Economic Zone operator to import items without the payment of the required duties.
According to the Auditor General, the allegation could not be substantiated due to a lack of transparency surrounding the entity.
However, Commissioner of Customs, Velma Ricketts Walker is of a different opinion.
The variance between the two entities left several parliamentarians queasy.
East Rural St. Andrew MP, Juliet Holness is one such.
She was joined by Committee Chairman, Julian Robinson who said the two entities were miles apart.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Finance says the matter of the whistleblower complaint is still under active investigation.