The president of the Institute of Chartered Accountants Ghana (ICAG), Mr Christian Sottie, has asked accountants to adhere to prudent financial management in order to promote national development.
He said the critical role accountants played in national development required the members of ICAG to be guided by the ethics and principles that underlined accountancy practice in the country, stressing that it was unethical to engage in any form of malfeasance that could drag the image of the institute through the mud.
He was speaking at the opening session of an induction course for 266 new members of ICAG in Accra last Thursday.
The two-day annual programme is designed to initiate the new members into the accountancy profession after they passed the institute’s professional examinations.
The inductees were taken through the principles of good ethical behaviour, stress management and investment in professional excellence with the aim of equipping them with knowledge for practical work.
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Mr Sottie noted that “members of ICAG are regulated by five fundamental principal code of ethics, including integrity, objectivity, professional competence as well as confidentiality.”
“Therefore, any member who engages in financial malfeasance is disciplined by the professional standard and Ethics Committee of the Council,” he said.
He observed that accountability and stocktaking formed the basis of success in all spheres of human endeavour, for which reason he called on all professionals to protect their integrity by being firm and trustworthy in managing finances.
A former Supreme Court Judge, Mr Justice V.C.R.A.C. Crabbe, called on the ICAG to institute mechanisms that would check the conduct of its members, especially in public institutions.
He underscored the important role proper record keeping played in the development of a country, urging all people whose work schedule required them to manage finances to do so honestly.
“The tradesman keeps his account books. The scientist keeps his experimental notebook, just as other workers. This is a lesson for each citizen of Ghana to record their activities on a daily basis,” he added.
Mr Justice Crabbe observed that a call to accountancy was a call to acting with responsibility, saying that was the way by which opportunities for development could be utilised properly.
He called on the ICAG to collaborate with state institutions such as Parliament and the Auditor- General’s department which had the mandate to audit public expenditure.