Major overhaul recommended for NMFU

first_imgFollowing a forensic audit conducted at the National Frequency Management Unit (NFMU), it was recommended that a series of revamp measures be undertaken to enhance the functioning of the Unit.Among the recommendations put forward by independent auditing firm, Ram and McRae Consulting, were revamping of the organisational structure, enhance the technical capabilities, ensure that current organisational objectives are met and prepare for the passage and operationalising of the Telecommunications Act.The report, which was released on Friday by the Finance Ministry, said in addition to appointing a Board of Directors, the NFMU needs to establish a proper reporting line with the subject Minister; that is, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo.“It is therefore recommended that pending the passing of the Telecommunications Act, the Prime Minister and the appointed Board should establish clear lines of authority, communications and reporting with and within the Unit,” the auditor stated.On the issue of the Telecommunications Act, Ram and McRae urged that the Unit prepare for the passage and operationalising of the new legislation since when enacted, the NFMU will be absorbed in the new Agency and subject to that authority.This will require new regulations and orders to ensure that the functions are performed and to maximise revenue collection, the report stated. In addition, it outlined that as the telecoms sector is on the verge of being liberalised and modernised, next generation mobile networks will need more spectrum, which would result in increased revenue. On this note, the Unit is advised to reduce and regularise the number of unlicensed spectrum users.This now brings the issue of outstanding debts and debt management. Ram and McRae said during the review, it was revealed that a number of issues were unearthed primarily in the areas of managing revenue and receivables, and illegally meeting expenditures of other agencies and projects.The accounting department should implement standard procedures for the invoicing of users and the following up and collection of receivables. These procedures should include the specific timeframes for letters, telephone calls and suspension of licences for hard-core defaulters.Furthermore, it was observed that the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) of the NFMU’s Accounts Department saw invoices being prepared a minimum of six weeks prior to the anniversary data. However, a number of licences were not invoiced in accordance with the SOPs. Also, with regard to payment tracking, the SOPs highlights that accounting staff should execute phone calls to the licensee two weeks before the anniversary date, on the anniversary date and two week after the anniversary date to ensure payments are received but these responsibilities were not properly conducted, the auditors posited.According to the accounting firm, in the case of a corporation sole, which the NFMU falls under, responsibility for ensuring the existence and operation of an adequate system of controls rests with the Managing Director. This represents a significant weakness on the management and oversight of the NFMU since it can facilitate the overriding of controls by the Managing Director.Moreover, Ram and McRae went on to talk about the “close connection” between the NFMU, which is charged with the responsibility for allocating frequencies, and the Guyana Broadcasting Authority (GBA), the agency responsible for issuing radio, television and cable licences.The report went on to detail that during the years 2012 to 2015, the NFMU met payments on behalf of the GNBA amounting to $28,877,267. These payments included directors fees, employees salaries, and fees for the GNBA’s Monitoring Committee and other operating expenses. In December 2014, the GNBA reimbursed the NFMU for the entire sum advanced as such no further action was required.However, Ram and McRae outlined that while the head of the NFMU is a member of the GBA, given the corporate sole status of the NFMU the GBA has no formal role in that body. “Ram & McRae also strongly disagrees with the current status as a Corporation Sole,” the auditor remarked.Additionally, the auditing firm recommended that the NFMU establish relationships with institutions or authorities outside of Guyana in the area of radio frequency spectrum management and develop technical standards and engineering support facilities necessary or appropriate in relation to the functions.“Implementation of the recommendations contained in this report should enhance the functioning of the Unit,” the firm stated.Prime MinisterMoses NagamootooChristopher Ramlast_img read more

River edge out Boca to win Copa Libertadores

first_imgIt means River prevailed 5-3 on aggregate after the first leg finished 2-2 and the club reclaim the trophy they had last won in 2015, lifting it for the fourth time in their history.Postponed on three occasions and then relocated from Buenos Aires to Madrid, the supporters of these two great clubs showed in the Santiago Bernabeu why this fixture had been billed as one of football’s greatest ever.Lionel Messi, Antoine Griezmann and Diego Godin were among the 62,200 in attendance.But, despite the bouncing huddles in the streets, the plumes of blue and red smoke, the swinging scarves, fluttering flags and fans that were chanting in their seats three hours before kick-off, there was nothing to extinguish the lingering sense of regret.There was no repeat of the scenes that cast a shadow over Argentinian football and saw the original game at River’s El Monumental on November 24 postponed, when around 50 fans attacked Boca’s team bus and left some of their players injured.Madrid, which will also host the Champions League final in June, was chosen in part because of its record of hosting major events and the security, which included around 2,500 police officers, did its job before kick-off.Fans were separated into zones either side of the stadium and had to go through checks even to enter the area immediately surrounding it.The shame was only that the operation was not as thorough 15 days ago and that a minority decided to take advantage.– Raucous atmosphere –Both clubs were allocated 25,000 tickets, with 5,000 of those reserved for residents of Argentina. The fear had been most of those buying would be tourists and neutrals, but the atmosphere suggested different.Both teams had initially refused to play in Spain’s capital but as the losers, Boca’s sense of grievance will now become more entrenched.They felt River were responsible for the chaos two weeks ago and should have forfeited the trophy. They took their case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, but the appeal was rejected on Saturday.When the players shuffled out two hours before kick-off to inspect the pitch, they held up their phones to capture the thousands already inside and the view of a stadium most of them had never played in before.The cheers grew louder when they came out for kick-off. Then there were whistles as the teams swapped ends and each were greeted by their opponent’s fans behind the goal.Jonatan Maidana was playing for Boca when they last won the Copa Libertadores 11 years ago and, now in the red and white of River, he almost gave his former club an early lead, slicing just over his own crossbar.The game lacked quality but came alive one minute before half-time. Nahitan Nandez’s superb pass split two River defenders and Benedetto kept a cool head, guiding into the corner, before taunting the beaten Gonzalo Montiel.River had been inferior but improved. Their first real attacking move was also a brilliant one as Leonardo Ponzio and Quintero exchanged passes before the latter pulled back for Pratto to sweep home.The game meandered towards full-time and seemed destined for penalties until Quintero intervened. It was a goal worthy of winning the tournament, as he collected 25 yards out, glanced up and whipped the ball in off the underside of the crossbar.Leonardo Jara almost snatched a late Boca goal but his shot nicked the outside of the post. Then, with goalkeeper Esteban Andrada up for a corner, River added the final touch.Martinez ran the ball into the empty net and River’s substitutes and staff all poured onto the pitch to begin the celebrations.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000A brilliant goal by Juan Quintero steered River Plate to a fourth Copa Libertadores crown © AFP / Javier SORIANOMADRID, Spain, Dec 10 – River Plate won the Copa Libertadores by beating their fiercest rivals Boca Juniors 3-1 after extra time on Sunday, bringing an end to a final tainted by violence and moved more than six thousand miles away from Argentina.Boca took the lead through Dario Benedetto but Lucas Pratto equalised before Juan Quintero and Gonzalo Martinez both scored in extra time to win a fittingly dramatic contest for River.last_img read more