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Jun 30, 2014

Audit confirms missing monies at the B.S.C.F.A.

Alfredo Ortega

An employee of the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association has been terminated, and five others are in the hot seat after an audit turned up the misappropriation of funds. It happened between the end of 2012 and April 2014. Apparently those six employees worked out a scheme to give themselves extra money every payday, to the tune of seventy-eight thousand dollars. Today Vice Chairman of the B.S.C.F.A.’s Committee of Management told us that the internal corruption was discovered by an external audit commissioned by the company.

 

Alfredo Ortega, Vice Chairman, Committee of Management, BSCFA

“The external auditor found that seventy-eight thousand dollars was missing from the salary section and this has been something that was identified had happened from late 2012 until it was found by the external auditor. And the auditor found out that there were some irregularities in regards to salaries and based on that he gave his findings to the senior accountant on which it was also presented to the C.E.O.; it was presented to the Committee of Management on which as the committee we said let a full investigation be done on what is going on with this salary situation. And that is where the contract was given to the auditor for him to do his findings in all the financial institutions on which the online payments were directed to. And in that regard is where he found out from since late 2012 to April of 2014, there was a deviation of funds through the online salary that went through about six different persons that were involved in this situation. So based on that, when he finalized his findings, it came out to an amount of seventy-eight thousand dollars. One of the persons had been already dismissed from her duties and the others, well we are being advised to speak to them and see how best we can reach an arrangement with them to repay, but all of this will be presented to the Board of Directors and to the farmers whenever we have a general meeting with particular to this area of the salary funds that were deviated in this manner.”

 

According to Ortega, the company has entered into an arrangement with five employees to repay the money they stole.

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