ORGANIZATIONAL HISTORY AND PROFILE
The Office of the Auditor General was established during the Italian Colony named as “Controlere Generale Di Conti”. Its functions were to control the accounts and properties of Eritrea. During the British Administration the office was named as Office of the Auditor General and its functions were controlling of Government assets, revenue and expenditures. During the Federation Era (1950 – 1962) under the auspices of UN, the powers and duties of the office were defined by law (Regulation No. 137/1957).
The office became a branch office of the Office of the Auditor General of Ethiopia when Eritrea was forcefully annexed by Ethiopia in 1962. The branch office was raised to a Northern Regional Office of the Auditor General and was entrusted with auditing government accounts in Eritrea, Tigray and Gondar Provinces in Ethiopia. The ex – Northern Regional Office of the Auditor General was dissolved after Eritrea was liberated from Ethiopia and a new Office of the Auditor General (OAG), that become the Supreme Audit Institution in Eritrea, was first established by Proclamation No. 23/1992 in May 1992 which was later repealed and replaced by Proclamation No. 37/1993. The mandate of the OAG was spelled out in Legal Notice 14/1993 Article 2/25 which is to audit or cause to be audited all Government institutions and parastatals and State-owned enterprises. Parastatals and State-owned enterprises are being audited by the Audit Service Corporation (ASC) which provides its professional audit services on fee basis and works autonomously under the general supervisory control of the Auditor General. At present the audit clients served by the OAG are 177.
In 1992 the number of audit staff was about 20 but has been steadily growing in number since. The OAG has been facing a significant staff shortfall since the conflict with Ethiopia started in 1998. However, the audit coverage and the quality of service have shown growth and improvement from year to year. This improvement has been achieved as a result of the efforts performed by the OAG to develop the knowledge and skills of the existing auditors in accounting and auditing in partnership with AFROSAI-E and other governmental and international organizations.
The OAG conducts its audits in accordance with the International Standards for Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAIs). Currently it is regularly delivering Financial, compliance and Performance Audit services. The Office also conducts forensic audits upon request from its stakeholders.
The OAG is member of INTOSAI, AFROSAI, and AFROSAI-E. The office has been benefiting from the annual training events organized by AFROSAI-E. The audit manuals used by the OAG is also customized from the AFROSAI-E manuals.