National audit office to decide by mid-Jan on LRT audit

LRT headquarters in Vilnius

The Lithuanian National Audit Office (NAO) expects to decide by mid-January whether or not to perform an audit of the public broadcaster Lithuanian National Radio and Television (LRT).

NAO spokesman Justas Jaskonis told BNS on Wednesday that the office had received a request from the LRT Council to carry out an audit.

"We have received the council's request and will consider it as any other requests. A response is likely to be given in mid-January after next year's audit program has been approved," he said.

The LRT Council turned to the NAO after receiving a set of additional questions answers from more than half of the Seimas members on employee salaries, contracts with production companies and property lease. The public broadcaster intends to answer these questions without waiting for the auditors' findings.

Žygintas Pečiulis, chairman of the LRT Council, told BNS on Wednesday that they sought a non-politicized inspection.

"Our key message is that we are for transparency and that we want things to be examined and questions answered. But (...) we want this to be done by authorized competent organizations according to certain procedures rather than by politicians," he said.

The LRT Council in November received a set of questions regarding salaries, public procurement processes and relations with production companies from 66 members of the 141-seat Seimas, followed by a set of additional questions from 80 lawmakers in December.

Source: BNS
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