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EOCO SUED By Auditor-General

Auditor General, Daniel Domelevo, is challenging the legality of an ongoing investigation by the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) into alleged procurement breaches at the Audit Service.

Mr Domelevo filed the suit at the Human Rights Division of the High Court, challenging the action by EOCO as not founded in law.

“…Respondent [EOCO] has  no  statutory  mandate  to investigate any offences relating to suspected corruption and corruption-related  offences  under  the  Public  Procurement  Act, 2003 (Act 663) and generally corruption and corruption-related offences under the Criminal Offences Act, 1960 (Act 29) involving public officers, which offences by virtue of the Office of Special Prosecutor Act 2017 (Act 959) have now  been  placed  squarely within the province of the Office of  Special  Prosecutor  to investigate…” the suit read, among other things.

Auditor General had previously written a strongly worded letter to EOCO for investigating the alleged procurement breaches at the Audit Service but EOCO hit back, reminding the Auditor General that he had no power to interpret the law.

The Auditior General, through his legal counsel, Messrs Sory @Law, said EOCO acted ultra vires when it purportedly commenced investigations into the procurement of vehicles purchased by the Service sometime in the year 2018, pleading the court to enforce his fundamental human rights.

“Respondent’s [EOCO] decision to investigate and purported investigation of the Audit Service and myself for breaches under the Public Procurement  Act,  2003  (Act 663) allegedly committed in connection with the purchase of vehicles for the Service is wrongful and illegal for want of compliance with Respondent’s enabling statute,” the suit stated.

He also said EOCO’s purported investigation of the Audit Service for breaches under the Public  Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) allegedly committed in connection with the purchase of vehicles for the Service in 2018 was initiated capriciously, arbitrarily and in bad faith.

The Auditor-General is seeking the following reliefs from the Human Rights Court:

  • A declaration that Respondent has no statutory mandate to investigate the Audit Service for any breaches under the Public Procurement  Act,  2003 (Act 663).
  • A declaration that Respondent’s decision to investigate and purported investigation of the Audit Service and myself for breaches under the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) allegedly committed in connection with the purchase of vehicles for the Service is wrongful, illegal, null and void.
  • A declaration that the caution administered to me, in the course of Respondent’s purported investigation of the Audit Service for breaches under the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) allegedly committed in connection with the purchase of vehicles for the Service in the year 2018 is wrongful,  illegal, null and void.
  • An order of injunction directed at Respondent, ite officers, agents and all such persons, however, called from continuing with any investigations of the Audit Service and myself for breaches under the Public Procurement Act of 2003 (Act 663).

An order of injunction directed at Respondent, its officers, agents and all such persons however called from purporting to and/or exercising any power(s) of arrest against myself and /‹9r any official of the Audit Service in connection with  Respondent’s investigations of the Service for alleged breaches under the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663)