8 December 2015, Tuesday
Serious irregularities in Auditor General's report
Irregularities that suggest practices of corruptions are included in the annual report of Auditor General, Odysseas Michaelides for 2014, which he presented to the Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades.
The report highlights cases of tax evasion that were not effectively dealt with by the relevant authorities.
Doctors and lawyers did not submit tax returns, in some cases for years without facing consequences.
On the dock was also the book keeping of municipalities. The Auditor General found serious irregularities in the books of six local authorities, some of which could constitute criminal offences.
The report also found a number of cases where Turkish Cypriot properties, with the consent of the minister of interior as the Guardian of TC properties, were sold much beneath their market value, suggesting profiteering.
The Auditor General examines the circumstances that lead to 2013 financial crisis. Particularly takes a look at Laiki Bank.
For 18 months, from September 2011 to March 2013, the bank was kept afloat by receiving €9.8 billion in Emergency Liquidity Assistance (ELA), with the approval of Cyprus Central Bank after consultations with the European Central Bank.
A situation that resulted in ELA rising to unacceptable for the Cyprus economy levels.
Other issues mentioned in the report are connected to insurance companies, the Cooperative Central Bank, the Cyprus Housing Finance Cooperation and the Taxation Department.
Michaelides also mentioned concerns over mismanagement at the Veterinary Services connected to the export of milk products to a non-EU country and their subsequent return to Cyprus.
President Nicos Anastasiades called on Michaelides to remain uncompromising on any breach of good governance practices.
Receiving the Annual report, Anastasiades congratulated the Auditor General on the work he had already carried out and encouraged him to continue with the same zeal.