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Actions required after audits

China Daily | Updated: 2017-06-27 07:09

In a recent audit report submitted by the National Audit Office to the top legislature on the implementation of last year's central budget, more than 600 clues of major law and discipline violations were disclosed, involving 7,900 units and 1,110 public servants.

In its report, the National Audit Office revealed a series of clues of corruption and other malpractices in the use of national funds earmarked for poverty alleviation and pointed out institutional loopholes in the process. The audit findings have prompted local governments to take corresponding rectification measures to reform and improve the policies and measures they have adopted for poverty alleviation.

Given that this year's audit report is the first one conducted by the National Audit Office under Hu Zejun, its new auditor-general, it has drawn much public attention. Hu's predecessors launched continuous audit storms during their tenures, winning a lot of praise from the public. For example, the audit of some high-speed rail projects conducted by the National Audit Office under the helm of former auditor-general Liu Jiayi exposed the corruption of the former minister of what was then the Ministry of Railways and finally led to his downfall.

However, what people want to see is not the continuing revelations of the malpractices of State departments by the auditing authorities year after year, but institutional improvements that can fundamentally help the country prevent such problems from occurring again in next year's audit storm.

Audits are in essence an important part of supervision. But their efforts can only prove worthy after a series of follow-up actions are taken and those responsible for the problems their auditing uncovered are held to account. If the problems found by audits fail to bring commensurate punishments to the involved units and involved individuals, even a harshly-worded audit report will not stop the violators from carrying on with their misdeeds.

-Southern Metropolis Daily

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