£500,000 will not be recovered from former Swansea-based charity Awema
THE co-ordination of public money to a former Swansea-based charity wound up amid allegations of financial mismanagement, was “often weak”, a report has concluded.
And the study has also concluded that more than £500,000 will not be recovered from The All Wales Ethnic Minority Association, which was wound up earlier this year, after an earlier report identified “significant and fundamental failures” in its governance.
But the Wales Audit Office, which today publishes its report into the relationship between Awema and the Welsh Government, found there was no evidence of inappropriate political influence over funding decisions.
Assistant auditor general Anthony Barrett, said: “We have established that the Welsh Government’s payments to Awema totalled £7.15 million, with a further £3.01 million having been committed in principle before the Welsh Government announced the termination of its funding on 9 February 2012.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
“The Welsh Government’s management and co-ordination of its grant funding to Awema was often weak and its responses to historical concerns about Awema were too narrowly focused.
“By contrast, the Welsh Government responded robustly to the concerns that emerged about Awema in December 2011, but dealing with the consequences has been time-consuming.
“While the outcome of the liquidation process is not yet known, it is clear that the Welsh Government will not recover most of the £545,966 debt it now believes it is owed by Awema, as this far exceeds the amounts available to reimburse creditors.”
Awema, which was based on The Kingsway, was wound up following a report which revealed its chief executive, Naz Malik, had claimed £9,000 as an advance on future expenses, to pay off his credit card, and used taxpayers money to pay a parking fine and fund tickets to rugby and cricket matches and gym membership.
His daughter Tegwen, the charity’s operations director, had also seen her salary more than double since 2008, to just over £50,052.
Mr Barrett added: “Importantly, our audit work found no evidence of inappropriate political influence on the part of any current or former ministers or Assembly Members.
A Welsh Government spokesman said: “We welcome this report, which was requested by the Welsh Government, and have co-operated fully with the Wales Audit Office in its preparation.
“The Welsh Government is already acting on the lessons contained in the report which will build on the work under way to improve the future management of our grants programme.”