Written Answers. - Internal Audits.

Frances Fitzgerald

Question:

70 Ms Fitzgerald asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs the value for money internal audit systems in place in his Department; and if these are regularly reported upon. [8231/98]

Internal audit in my Department is a function carried out by the inspection and internal audit unit which examines and makes recommendations for improvements in the operation of missions abroad and of control systems at headquarters.

The unit has carried out interal audits of the systems of control in place in a number of areas of the Department. It has not carried out specific value for money audit but the unit, in carrying out inspections of diplomatic missions and internal audits of areas of work at headquarters, seeks evidence that the value for money consideration is taken into account in the Department's control systems.

Inspection reports are submitted for consideration by the management advisory committee of my Department and internal audit reports are submitted to the Accounting Officer for consideration and action where necessary.

Two internal auditors are employed in the development co-operation division of the Department. The internal auditors oversee audits of the Irish Aid Programme in the six priority countries and play an important role in assessing the efficiency and effectiveness of Irish Aid-funded projects implemented by other agencies.