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Explanatory Memorandum to Audit and Accountability (Northern Ireland) Order 2003

Background and Policy Objectives

2.The Order is designed to reform and update existing audit arrangements for public sector bodies in Northern Ireland.

3.The Order follows on undertakings given during the passage of the Government Resources and Accounts Act (NI) 2001 in the Northern Ireland Assembly and forms an integral part of the Government’s response for Northern Ireland to the recommendations of the Sharman Review of Audit and Accountability.

4.The main aims of the Order are threefold:

a.

to transfer the audit of a residual number of statutory Non-Departmental Public Bodies (NDPBs), of which the Comptroller and Auditor General for Northern Ireland (C&AG) is not already auditor, to him;

b.

to grant the C&AG statutory access to documents held by certain third parties for the purposes of his audit and value for money (VFM) work; and

c.

to reorganise the structure of health service and local government audit in Northern Ireland.

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