Improving the quality of financial reports in this extraordinary situation is an achievement which is neither easy nor simple.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati has assured that both central and regional governments would continue to maintain accountability for state finances in handling COVID-19 by involving law enforcement agencies. “The government is working hard to use the state budget instruments to ease and restore our national economy. We must be accountable for using these resources," she said at the 2021 National Working Meeting on Accounting and Government Financial Reporting here Tuesday.

Furthermore, she has mentioned the law enforcement agencies that collaborate with the government in controlling the accountability of the state finances comprise the National Police, Office of the Attorney General, Corruption Eradication Commission, State Audit Board, Government’s Development Finance Comptroller and Government Goods/Service Procurement Policy Agency.

The agencies are involved to avoid the potential risk of misappropriation of the fund that can reduce the effectiveness of government programs, she has emphasized.

"We understand that there may be a risk in using state money so we involve law enforcement agencies in the planning and implementation stage," the minister stated.

Managing state finances in the midst of a crisis was not easy considering that many Ministries/Institutions (K/Ls) suddenly had to refocus their budgets, she admitted.

Meanwhile, several K/Ls suddenly received very large budgets since they had to be at the forefront in dealing with the pandemic – for instance the Health Ministry, Manpower Ministry, Social Affairs Ministry, Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises Ministry, as well as National Disaster Mitigation Agency.

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"I would like to express my gratitude to all K/Ls and local government leaders who, I believe, have been facing an extraordinarily difficult situation," Indrawati continued.

Nevertheless, she stated that they had overcome the challenges in maintaining the state financial accountability last year.

The 2020 Central Government Financial Report had received Unqualified Opinion from State Audit Board with 84 Ministry/Agency Financial Reports (LKKL) out of 86 LKKLs -- or 97.7 percent – and one State General Treasurer Financial Report.

The opinion was also provided to 486 local governments out of 542 local governments – or 89.7 percent – comprising of 33 province, 88 city, and 365 district governments.

“Improving the quality of financial reports in this extraordinary situation is an achievement which is neither easy nor simple. I convey my appreciation to all K/Ls and local governments that continue to maintain state finances and develop their governance," she added.

Related news: President seeks accountability for management of COVID-19 budget

Translator: Astrid Habibah, Uyu Liman
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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