The President of the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) Ghana, Harriet Akua Karikari, has called for swift and biting sanctions against persons found culpable for corruption.
She said the application of sanctions would serve as motivation for internal auditors to go the extra mile to detect corrupt practices and reduce corruption in the public sector.
“If we must reduce corruption in the public sector, we will need the support and collaboration of institutions that have the mandate to apply sanctions because if we report corruption and the people are not seriously sanctioned, it doesn’t encourage us and it doesn’t help change the situation. So sanctions are key to our performance,” she said.
Mrs Karikari made the call last Wednesday at the institute’s 2022 board and CEO governance workshop in Accra.
The workshop, held on the theme: “Elevating Corporate Sustainability”, brought together the national fraternity of auditors and business executives to discuss the sustainability of the country’s development in the current economic crisis.
Mrs Karikari noted that the theme for the workshop appropriately reflected the current times within which auditors operated as individuals and organisations.
“We face the challenges of harsh economic conditions as a country, and that demand good leadership to take us out of the doldrum, elevate and sustain our organisations,” she said.
The workshop, she said, was, therefore, to discuss cutting-edge and contemporary issues critical to effective conduct and improvement in leadership and governance.
Delivering the keynote address at the event, the CEO of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunication, Dr Kenneth Ashigbey urged board members of organisations in the country to support and collaborate with internal auditors to deliver on their mandates.
Similarly, he urged management team members to cooperate with their internal auditors to make organisations demonstrate good corporate governance.“The IIA has a framework that we can all refer to as a good guide on the relationship among governance players,” he said.
Dr Ashigbey told the gathering that, for organisations to be sustainable, there was a need to invest not only for today, but for the future.“Whether we are here as board members or senior executives we ought to admit that we may come off short if we were being assessed on how much we invested in research and development,” he said.
An Economist from the University of Ghana, Professor Godfred Bokpin in an address to the auditors, charged them to uphold their gatekeeping role to help curb corruption and push the country to the path of sustainable development.
He said the country needed a future which could be created only with good leadership starting from the institutional level to the state level, hence the need for auditors to step up their gatekeeping role in organisations.