Sunday, January 29, 2006
Another audit, more millions missing
From the AP:
A U.S. government audit found American-led occupation authorities squandered tens of millions of dollars that were supposed to be used to rebuild Iraq through undocumented spending and outright fraud.A partial listing of what the audit found includes:
Negligence proved deadly in at least one case. Three Iraqis plummeted to their deaths in an elevator in the Hillah General Hospital that was certified to have been replaced by a contractor who received $662,800.And this was just in the quiet part of the country. No doubt there will be more to follow.
Also in Hillah, occupation officials spent $108,140 to replace pumps and fix the city's Olympic swimming pool. But the contractor merely polished the old plumbing to make it look new and collected his money.
When the pool was filled, the water came out a murky brown and the pool's reopening had to be canceled. The reports did not identify the contractors involved....
....Two occupation authority field agents responsible for paying contractors left Iraq without accounting for more than $700,000 each. When auditors confronted their manager and asked where the money was, the manger tried to clear one of the agents through false paperwork....
...._Only a quarter of $23 million entrusted to civilian and military project and contracting officers to pay contractors ever found its way to those contractors.
_One contractor was paid $14,000 on four separate occasions for the same job.
_Of $7.3 million spent on a police academy near Hillah, auditors could account for just $4 million. They said $1.3 million was wasted on overpriced or duplicate construction or equipment not delivered. More than $2 million was missing.
_U.S. personnel "needlessly disbursed more than $1.8 million" of the estimated $2.3 million spent for renovating the library in the Shiite holy city of Karbala.
_The library contractor delivered only 18 of 68 personal computers called for and did not install Internet wiring or software. The computers worked only as stand-alones.
_The U.S.-led security transition command spent $945,000 for seven armored Mercedes-Benzes that were too lightly armored for Iraq. Auditors were able to account for only six of the cars.
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