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UAE audit body sets up anti-fraud hotline

posted on 02/07/2009: 519 views

The UAE's State Audit Institution (SAI) has set up a web-based hotline for members of the public to report fraudulent activity within the federal government.

The move follows stated commitment by the UAE to raise the standards of accountability and transparency at all federal levels. It is the first fraud hotline initiative of its kind in the Middle East.

The 'ReportFraud' service, hosted on the SAI's website is also open to federal government employees and suppliers. Only matters related to federal organisations can be investigated by the SAI.

SAI president Dr Hareb Al Amimi said: "This service allows concerned individuals to report suspicious activity while also ensuring that the process is handled discreetly and responsibly. The goal of ReportFraud is improved levels of governance and enhanced credibility for federal organisations."

Fraud is defined as the use of deception to unjustly obtain a benefit. Examples may include theft or misuse of assets, bribes and false accounting, improper claims for federal government benefits, and computer hacking and information theft.

Complete guidelines for reporting fraud are available in English and Arabic on the SAI website. Individuals may report fraud by e-mail or in writing.

SAI officials will keep all information received confidential though it does not undertake to investigate all reports. Reports may be ignored if they have been previously investigated, or found to be poorly substantiated or the result of foul play.

Established in 1976, the audit body is dedicated to improving accountability, governance standards and performance in the UAE federal government.

In May, the institution completed its first financial audits of government bodies in line with the globally recognised International Standards on Auditing. The audits are part of a programme of internationally recognised auditing practices now being introduced by the SAI. The programme is being implemented in several phases and is expected to be completed by the end of 2012. – Gulf News


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