Accountants across Africa have been encouraged not to become too much fixated on what is widely known globally as best practices, but rather focus on “new practices” that are tailored to the needs of the continent.
Head of Internal Audit, Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) – Africa, Chembe Chakalashi, speaking at a Virtual Africa Members Convention themed: ‘Repositioning the Profession in Africa to Drive and Support Economic Recovery, Sustainability, and Social Governance’, said focusing on new practices rather than best practices will help accountants remain relevant in this ever-changing world, especially, at the time the continent seeks to recover from the global pandemic.
“How does the profession make a difference? How do we come up with specific models? Most of the models available are replicated. We need to come up with ideas of our own, tailor-made for Africa.
We need to respond to challenges in the continent in our own way. Let’s develop Africa- specific solutions. Let’s move from best practices to new ways of doing things. I believe that we will become relevant this way,” he said.
Also speaking at the event, Director of ACCA – Africa, Jamil Ampomah, emphasised the need to reposition the accounting profession in the aftermath of the global pandemic, as this will ensure that the profession continues to provide value to the wider public.
He stressed that, with the advent of technology and modern tools in the profession, it requires that accountants quickly adapt and still become innovative by developing solutions that will work on the continent.
Chief Executive for the Institute for Sustainability, Rodney Ndamba, also speaking at the event, touched on the importance of sustainability in the recovery process, urging accountants not to ignore its importance.
“Sustainability is the biggest economic opportunity of our time. Let’s stop talking and get things done. It is time for adaptive and impact-driven accounting in Africa,” he said.
Africa Members’ Convention Conference is a regional networking platform for ACCA members across Africa, facilitating critical discussions to align industry expectations with the agenda of the accountancy profession and finance professionals.
The three days conference explored three sub-thematic areas namely: Africa’s accountants at the heart of the continent’s route to recovery looking at the opportunities to standardize Environmental, Social and Governance [ESG] measures for Africa and how professionals could guide businesses to commit and work towards net-zero targets.
It also discussed how to sustainably transform businesses in Africa, guide evolution in core competencies, customize processes and strike the balance between digitally enabled efficiencies and the capacity to finance people.
The conference also gave an update on the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA) and explore the profession’s strategic role in supporting the successful implementation of the pact and positioning itself to prepare businesses to maximize the opportunities.