The Swaziland Government Treasury Department bank accounts have a shortfall of E5.1 billion (US$360 million).
Independent auditors fear there may have been fraud, misappropriation and embezzlement.
A forensic report undertaken by Kobla Quashie Consultants found the shortfall between what was in the bank accounts and other financial records.
The Times of Swaziland, the only independent daily newspaper in the kingdom where King Mswati III rules as sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch, reported that, ‘this has put the spotlight on wholly unacceptable banking reconciliation systems at the Treasury Department’.
The newspaper quoted Kobla Quashie saying, ‘It should be stated that the amounts noted as differences are so significant that it renders the annual treasury accounts submitted to Parliament and other government agencies inaccurate and misleading.’
It added that the suspected reconciliation was done for the sake of ‘administrative convenience’ and had ‘created doubt over the entire process, but has also opened a window for fraud, misappropriation and embezzlement’.