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ACBF tightens financial system

Staff Writer

THE African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) is tightening its financial support system and is now operating a special account to be used solely for its projects.

NT face=”Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif”>An ACBF official last year told executive directors and finance managers at a workshop that the beneficiary project’s counterpart funds must not be co-mingled with funds in the special account.

The ACBF-funded projects are required to be audited annually by a firm of reputable professional auditors in each country.

In Zimbabwe, the ACBF extends financial support to the Zimbabwe Economic Policy Analysis and Research Unit within the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, the National Economic Consultative Forum and the Macroeconomic and Financial Management Institute of Eastern and southern Africa.

The official said an audit report together with a management letter should be submitted to the foundation within six months after the project’s financial year-end.

The special account comes in as several donor organisations have decided pulling out of Zimbabwe, citing the country’s poor economic and political climates. In some cases, however, donor countries have pulled out because of abuse of funds.

Donors are up in arms over Zimbabwe’s land reform programme, human rights record, alleged abuse of judiciary, as well as its tense political climate.

“Temporary borrowing from the special account in anticipation that counterpart funds to cover the beneficiary’s share of co-financing will shortly be available is strictly forbidden,” she said. “The beneficiary project may however prefinance eligible items of expenditure under the grant agreement and then reimburse itself from the special account. Special accounts must be held in commercial banks or central banks.”

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