Mr. Kwadwo Mpiani, Minister for Presidential Affairs has called for continuous education to sharpen the skills of internal auditors to enable them to assist managements to constantly improve on public sector financial accountability.
He said such education was needed since internal auditing was essential for proper functioning of every institution by bringing a systematic and disciplined approach to evaluating and improving the effectiveness of the risk management, control and governance processes.
Mr. Mpiani said this in a speech read on his behalf by Mr L. T. Tusoe, Chief Director, Ministry for Presidential Affairs, at the closing of a three-week Ghana-Commonwealth Internal Audit Exchange Programme hosted in Accra.
Internal auditors from nine Commonwealth countries, including Malawi, Mauritius, Zambia, Tanzania, Bostwana, Tonga and Ghana attended the first ever programme to be held in the West African sub-region.
The programme, co-organised by the Commonwealth Secretariat and the Internal Audit Agency (IAA), afforded participants the opportunity to share country experiences and learn other practices from member states.
Mr. Mpiani urged participants to apply skills, knowledge and competencies acquired to help improve the practice of public sector internal auditing in their various countries by resolving as individuals to implement positive changes in their fields of work.
Mr. Patrick Numo, Director General, Internal Audit Agency, said participants were taken through 17 sessions of presentations on risk management, internal controls, governance processes, internal audit planning, execution and reporting, among other things, to help improve their understanding of their roles as internal auditors in the public sector of their respective countries.
He said participants were also attached to some of the public institutions in Ghana as interns to get first hand information on internal auditing.
Mr Kaifala Marah, Advisor, Public Expenditure Management, Commonwealth Secretariat, advised participants to, as they return to their various countries, "avoid big bang reforms, always ask questions and avoid the tread mill paradox".
He advised that they should move systematically as they introduced internal control and audit machinery in their jurisdiction.
"You should adopt policies that could be effectively implemented to achieve desired results. Always review, monitor and evaluate your systems and processes by asking questions and by assessing yourselves."