Audit Office of the Republic of Cyprus

Law on the Provision of Evidence and Information to the Auditor General (Law 113(Ι)/2002)


Preamble

The House of Representatives votes as follows:

Citation

1. This Law may be cited as the Submission of Data and Information to the Auditor General of the Republic Law of 2002.

Interpretation

2. In this Law, unless the context otherwise requires-

“Auditor General of the Republic” includes, apart from the Deputy Auditor General of the Republic, every member of the Audit Office of the Republic authorized by the Auditor General of the Republic to exercise specific functions, as well as any other authorized person by the Auditor General to whom the execution of specialized or any other kind of work is assigned by the Auditor General.

Scope

2Α. The provisions of this Law do not apply in relation to the Central Bank of Cyprus and in relation to the supervision of works of credit institutions, as these are defined according to the provisions of the the Business of Credit Institutions Law:

It is understood that, during the carrying out of performance audits at such credit institutions, the Auditor General of the Republic does not have the authority to ask for the lifting of banking secrecy in relation to any bank account kept at the said institution or access to data and/or information to which, according to the International Standards of Audit, a person carrying out an independent audit on the financial statements of the institution would not have access to, according to the provisions of Law providing for the Statutory Audits of Annual and Consolidated Financial Statements.

Authority of the Auditor General to receive data, information or explanations

3. Notwithstanding of the provisions of any other law, the Auditor General of the Republic, in the exercise of his duties, has the authority to request information in any form, including electronic form, explanations and information, written or oral, which in his judgment may assist him in the execution of his work, from the Ministers, the civil servants, the presidents, the members of the Councils and the employees of public entities, the mayors, the community presidents, the members of the municipal and community councils and their employees, the officers and employees of various services of the Republic, other authorities or boards that are established or will be established by law or by other funds of the public sector or other organizations, the accounts of which are audited by the Auditor General of the Republic and generally from any person that possesses or is accountable for these data, explanations or information.

Obligation to comply

4. The Ministers, the civil servants, the presidents, the members of the Councils and the employees of public entities, the mayors, the community presidents, the members of the municipal and community councils and their employees, the officers and the employees of other organizations and any person mentioned in article 3, are obliged to-

(a) Not give information, data or explanations, to the Auditor General of the Republic, which are knowingly false, incorrect or untrue; ·

(b) not conceal any information or data·

(c) not neglect, omit or refuse to submit to him as soon as possible, or not to impede the full and free access to any official file, book, contract, agreement, bill, invoice or other official file or data saved on a computer or other necessary, in his judgment, document for purposes of the ongoing audit, and to not impede or refuse to provide copies, of any documents mentioned above ·

(d) to not provide, offer or promise remuneration and to not exercise personal or professional or any other type of influence to a person who has been asked or who will be asked to provide data or information or to present any document, based on paragraph (c) above; and

(e) to not attempt to incite any person in the withholding, non-disclosure or concealment of data or information or to the provision of false information or data or explanation or to the concealment of the truth.

Compliance and implementation report

4A. Upon submission of the state budget or the budget of legal entities under public law to the House of Representatives, a detailed compliance and implementation report is submitted by those legally responsible for preparing these budgets, regarding the recommendations of the Auditor General of the Republic included in his last issued annual report, and which concern the responsibilities and activities of the organizations related to the Budget under approval.

Offences

5.—(1) (a) Any Minister, civil servant, president, member of a Council or employee of a legal entity under public law, mayor, president of a community councils, member of a municipal and community council and their employees and any person mentioned in article 3, who refuses or knowingly conceals or fails to comply with the provisions of article 4 above, is guilty of an offence and is subject to, in case of conviction, to imprisonment up to one year, or a fine up to £1000, or to both these penalties.

(b) There can be no prosecution against a Minister, president or member of a legal entity under public law, a mayor, a community president or member of the municipal or community council or other officer, for any offence against article 5 and paragraph (a) above before securing the prior approval of the Attorney General of the Republic.

Authority of the Auditor General to request information

6. The Auditor General has the authority to request, from any natural or legal person that receives a grant, or guarantee, or loan, from the Consolidated Fund, or other public funds to provide him with all the required data in order to verify how the amount of the grant, or guarantee, or loan, was disbursed..

Resolution of uncertainties regarding the authority of the Auditor General

7. In order to resolve any uncertainty, by this Law, it is stated that the Auditor General has the authority and may carry out performance audits in a Ministry, or its departments, or services, any legal entity under public law, municipality, community council or any other fund or organization that is audited by him, in order to ascertain whether the abovementioned operate and use the resources available to them in an economic, efficient and effective way.

Assignment of audit of accounts

8.-(1) Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law, the Auditor General of the Republic may, at his discretion, assign the audit or designate the assignment of the audit of accounts of any legal entity under public law, body governed by public law, local government authority, council, fund, authority, plan and of any other audited by him, to auditors or audit firms that have secured authorization and have been registered in the relevant registry kept pursuant to the Law providing for the Statutory Audits of Annual and Consolidated Financial Statements of 2009 and 2013, as these are amended or replaced from time to time:

It is understood that the appointment and remuneration of the auditors or the audit firms will be approved by the Auditor General of the Republic:

It is further understood that the relevant remuneration will be paid by the auditee directly to the auditors or audit firms carrying out the audit.

(2) The auditors or the audit firms to which the audit is assigned will submit their report along with the audited accounts to the auditee or to the competent body, according to the provisions of the relevant Law governing the operation of the auditee, with notification to the Auditor General of the Republic.

(3) In accordance with the provisions of subparagraphs (1) and (2), the Auditor General of the Republic may at any time carry out, at his discretion, additional performance or any other audit.







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