Council fraud report due

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A REPORT into alleged fraud at Dungannon Council, which is due to be published next week, is expected to clear suspected staff of any financial wrong-doing.

A source close to the council said that he believed there would be no criminal inquiry into the behaviour of the accused party when the report is published in at the end of the month.

The council became embroiled in the investigation in January and called in its internal auditors, the accounting firm Deloitte, after complaints were made by a staff member and reported to the local press and the police.

Acting Chief Executive Iain Frazier has confirmed that the inquiry was focussed on the Technical Services Department.

The council’s activities are audited every year by staff from the NI Audit Office.

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Local government auditors are mainly responsible for the audit of Northern Ireland District Councils and report the results of their work to the Department of the Environment.

The Local Government Auditor can, if considered appropriate, make a Public Interest Report on any matter coming to notice in the course of an audit.

The NIAO gave Dungannon Council a clean bill of health last year, stating: “The Council continues to have adequate financial management arrangements overall.” It added that the council had a stable financial position overall.

The council was also praised by the audit office for its positive and constructive response to the audit.

The audit office’s full letter to Dungannon Council, highlighting important issues, can be found at the Tyrone Times website through the following link http://www.dungannon.gov.uk/userfiles/file/Annual%20Audit%20Letter%2010-11.pdf.