Three districts in Terengganu were found not to distribute school uniforms and bags to poor children because of a possible selection hiccup in 2010.
The schools were in three districts - Marang, Dungun, and Setiu - while 53,300 sets were distributed in the other four districts. There are no explanations why distribution was not done.
To make matters worse, some districts were found to distribute the school items, involving 42,684 sets of school uniforms, in May and not in December or January, before the school session starts.
Further, some of the unused school uniforms and bags were kept in storerooms were found to have been damaged by by termites.
All this is stated in the 2010 Audit Report on Terengganu, on the Terengganu state secretary’s office.
In Terengganu, households with incomes of less than RM1,200 a month can have two of their school-going children receive assistance.
It noted that while the Terengganu government’s efforts should be lauded as between 55,000 to 90,000 poor schoolchildren benefit annually since 2006, it detected several weaknesses.
The report also states that its visit in June and August last year to Kuala Terengganu, Hulu Terengganu, Kemaman and Besut districts found that 89,962 school uniform items worth RM1.45 million were kept in stores.
These school items were kept in school stores, school computer labs, district office stores and district education office stores.
‘Damaged due to termites’
It noticed that some uniforms were damaged as a result of the storeroom being infested with termites, but it did not state the location.
The report also surveyed 5,000 recipients and found that 94.3 percent were found qualified to receive it, 2.8 percent were not qualified as their parents have a joint income in excess of RM1,200, while the remainder did not state their income.
The auditor-general’s report also states that there were families which have more than two children receiving the benefit.
In practice, the audit team detected several deficiencies, namely that no agreement was signed between the Terengganu government and the supplier, and the government does not impose an implementation bond on the supplier.
“There are no checks done when the items were delivered, resulting in losses of RM10,792 when it was found that the bags’ zippers were faulty, resulting in them not being able to be used and being kept in stores.