Mr Charles Deguara
Mr Charles Deguara, B.A. (Hons), joined the Public Service in 1977 and was posted at the Water Works Department. In 1983, following successful completion of the B.A. (Hons) Business Management degree course, he was appointed as an Administrative Officer with the responsibility of managing the Human Resources Division.
In 1990, Mr Deguara’s appointment as Treasury Accounting Officer represented a major shift to the area of public finance. Mr Deguara joined the Budget Office within the Ministry of Finance in 1992 and in 1996 he was designated as Officer-in-Charge of the Expenditure Division.
Mr Deguara’s appointment as Director, Policy and Planning at the Ministry for Home Affairs, in September 2000, marked another significant milestone throughout his Public Service career. In September 2001, Mr Charles Deguara was appointed as Director (Office of Review) within the same Ministry. One of his major assignments included the overall management of the successful EU pre-accession project ‘Strengthening Malta’s capacity in Border Control and in the area of Asylum’ having a total budget of 1.6 million euros.
In August 2002, Mr Deguara was appointed as Director General at the Land and Public Registry Division which comprises the Public Registry, the Land Registry and the Civil Registration Department (including the Passport Office).
In May 2004, Mr Deguara was appointed as Permanent Secretary at the Ministry for Justice and Home Affairs. This Ministry’s wide area of responsibilities ranged from the preservation of peace, order and security; the administration of Justice; the rehabilitation of prisoners within the correctional facilities; the reception, accommodation and integration of asylum seekers; the efficient management of Government’s immovable property and the ongoing monitoring of all Local Councils in Malta and Gozo. As Chairperson of the Schengen Task Force, Mr Deguara played a key role in ensuring the coordination of Malta’s timely and successful implementation of the various complex and extensive requirements necessary to enable accession to the Schengen zone in December 2007. Mr Deguara also led several high level delegations during visits abroad, including preliminary discussions related to Malta’s eventual accession to the United States Visa Waiver Programme and the successful negotiation of two bilateral agreements, which were subsequently signed in Malta, with the Chinese authorities.
In November 2008, after a career of more than 31 years within the public service, Mr Deguara was appointed as Deputy Auditor General at the National Audit Office following the necessary Parliamentary approval during the sitting held on 16 July 2008. He was re-confirmed in this position following Parliamentary unanimous approval given during the sitting held on 10 June 2013. During these 8 years, in close liaison with the Auditor General, he was actively involved in various key initiatives undertaken by the Office, such as:
- Leading the management team during negotiations with Union officials in connection with the two Collective Agreements (2008– 2012 and 2013 – 2016) which both introduced a number of innovative measures aimed to enhance staff motivation, and consequently efficiency levels, within the Office;
- Coordinating all preparations undertaken by the Organising Team in connection with the Commonwealth Auditors’ General Conference held in March 2014 by way of celebration of the 200th Anniversary of the setting up of a state audit institution in Malta. Was also actively involved in various other initiatives undertaken by the NAO to commemorate this critical milestone including the publication of a duly updated second edition of the ‘Guardian of the Public Purse’ as well as the issuance of a commemorative personalised cover stamp in collaboration with MaltaPost; and
- Representing the NAO on various committees, such as the Government Finance Statistics Committee and the Task Force on Social Security Reform Abuse and Fraud.
On 30th March 2016, Mr. Deguara was sworn in as Auditor General.
He is married to Josette and has one daughter, Susanna.
Deputy Auditor General
Mr. Noel Camilleri
Noel Camilleri BA (Hons) Bus Mangt., MBA (Bath,UK), CIPFA Hon was appointed Deputy Auditor General on 30 March 2016. He was previously Malta’s Accountant General, a position he had held for 14 years.
Noel started his career in the Public Service in 1990 after pursuing his studies at the University of Malta where he graduated in Business Management. Over the years he worked in different sections of the Treasury Department including the Cash Office, Accounting Operations and Administration occupying various positions.
In 1997 he was awarded a scholarship to read for an MBA at the University of Bath (UK). On obtaining his postgraduate degree Noel returned to the Treasury where he spearheaded the implementation of a Corporate Accounting System across Government Departments.
Following his appointment as Director of the Treasury, Noel set the pace for the restructuring of the Department which included greater focus on the core Treasury functions, capacity building and the hiving off of non-related activities. This was aimed at transforming the organization into one that distinguished itself in Financial Reporting, Financial Control and Debt Management.
In 2006, the Treasury was formally established as a Department with two main Directorates namely Government Accounts and Debt Management.
In 2014, Noel was awarded an Honorary CIPFA membership in recognition of his significant contribution to improving public financial management in Malta.
He served on the European Investment Bank’s Board of Directors between July 2013 and January 2016.
Noel is married to Josette and has one son, Isaac James.
Assistant Auditor General
Mr Brian Vella
Mr Brian Vella, B.A. (Hons) Accty, FIA, CPA, has over twenty five years experience at the National Audit Office. Duties included being in charge, as Senior Principal, of financial and compliance auditing of a number of Government Ministries and Departments (January 1996 to April 1999); Audit Manager/Personal Assistant to Auditor General, providing quality control on audit reports, tendering advice and preparing papers and speeches on audit-related themes. Mr Vella was also in charge of EU-related and other international relations at the NAO (May 1999 to June 2006). Assistant Auditor General of the Performance Audit Section, responsible for overseeing Value for Money/Performance Audit assignments and issue of relative reports (July 2006 to date).
Assistant Auditor General
Ms Tanya Mercieca
Ms Tanya Mercieca FIA, CPA and Certified Public Auditor commenced her career with the National Audit Office (NAO) in September 2001 as a Senior Auditor with the Performance Audit Section. She was promoted to the grade of Principal Auditor within the Financial and Compliance Section six months later. In 2003, Ms Mercieca was attached with the UK NAO on secondment for six months, gaining experience in public sector accrual-based accounting of a number of clients, within an Audit Unit responsible for the financial audit of the Department of Culture, Media and Sports.
Shortly after this secondment, Ms Mercieca was appointed as Audit Manager in 2004 when she was responsible for supervising regulatory audits of various Ministries, Government Departments and Public Entities. In 2009, she also took over the monitoring of audits of Local Councils.
As from 1 October 2011, Ms Mercieca was assigned the position of Acting Assistant Auditor General responsible for the Financial and Compliance Audit Section, which official appointment was confirmed on 1 November 2012.
Ms Mercieca also has a 24-year service with VF (Malta) Ltd. (formerly Blue Bell (Malta) Ltd.) since January 1977, where she occupied various positions within this manufacturing company. These included the post of Accountant in the Finance Department and that of a supervisor in the Production Planning Department.
She joined the Tax and Legal Services Department at PricewaterhouseCoopers in March 2001, before taking up employment with the NAO.
Assistant Auditor General
Ms Vanessa A. Tonna
Ms Vanessa A. Tonna B. Accty (Hons), FIA, CPA and Certified Public Auditor joined the National Audit Office in November 1999 as an Assistant Auditor with the Financial and Compliance Audit Section. She was subsequently promoted to the posts of Senior Auditor and later on Principal Auditor. Ms Tonna was the first female to occupy the post of Audit Manager within the NAO following her promotion to this grade in May 2003. As from December 2008, she commenced forming part of NAO Senior Management, enjoying an Assistant Auditor General grade responsible for monitoring and managing financial and compliance audits.
Throughout these fifteen years, she specialised in audits of various Ministries, particularly departments falling under the Ministry of Finance. Annual audit tasks included the Analysis of the Financial Report and certification of the Financial Statements of the Government of Malta. On various occasions, Ms Tonna supported NAO findings and recommendations at PAC level.
Before taking up employment at the NAO, Ms Tonna worked with private audit firms, and Departments within the Public Sector. Following a three-year Career Break, she rejoined the Office in October 2014.