Restore public confidence in governance – Ocheni charges AFIA, ANAN

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The Minister of State Labour and Employment, Prof. Stephen Ocheni has called on members of the Association of Forensic and Investigative Auditors in Nigeria (AFIA) and Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN), to restore public confidence in governance, through financial audit revolution in the public sector.

Ocheni said this in his office recently, when he received on courtesy visits the Board of the Association of Forensic and Investigative Auditors in Nigeria led by its National President, Dr. Mrs. Enape Victoria, and the Executives of the Abuja Chapter of the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria by the Chapter Chairman, Abdullahi Baba Yahaya respectively.

According to him “I charge you to do everything possible at ensuring financial audit revolution in the public sector so that the eroded desired public confidence will be restored. All hands must be on deck to support the present administration towards the realization of all the objectives that are contained in the Federal Government Economic Recovery and Growth Plan.”

Ocheni emphasized that the much needed economic growth cannot be achieved in the face of unabated fraud in the public sector, he therefore called on members of the Associations to take all necessary steps towards ensuring that all sector fraud and financial recklessness are fully tackled as a way of partnering with the Federal Government to realize its aim of ensuring probity and accountability in the financial system.

Speaking further, He affirmed that investigative audit in Nigeria has come at an auspicious time when President Muhammadu Buhari had embarked upon Economic Recovery and Growth Plan and had declared zero tolerance on corruption. Therefore, an investigative audit will help in the fight against corruption of the present administration.

Addressing the Executives of ANAN, the Minister of State, call on them to support the Government of the day, saying, “ANAN members constitute eighty-two percent of accountants in the public sector we should take necessary steps to support President Muhammadu Buhari in the task of building the nation and ensuring economic growth.”

Prof. Ocheni added that members of the Association are in charge of accounting processes in the public sector, they should, therefore, maintain a high standard of performance as a professional accountant in the public sector. He admonished them to continue to promote the image of the country by preparing the nation’s financial statement in such a way that reports will represent a true and fair status of the financial position of the government at any given time.

Earlier in her remarks, the National President of AFIA, Dr. Mrs. Enape Victoria, stated that if Nigeria must succeed in its fight against corruption, it must adopt a better strategy of preventing corrupt practices through proactive measures that prevent corruptions.

Dr. Enape added that the need for Nigeria to progress at par with other countries of the world by making haste to adopt forensic and investigative audit cannot be over-emphasized, she said. “With this, our country will attract foreign investors and will also save enough money for the provision of social amenities and infrastructural development.”

On his part, the Abuja Chapter Chairman of ANAN, Abdullahi Baba Yahaya expressed confidence in the appointment of Stephen ocheni as Honourable Minister of State Labour and Employment by President Muhammadu Buhari and affirmed the resolve of the Association to support the present administration in its efforts at ensuring economic growth and the fight against corruption.

“ANAN has helped in salvaging this country from the grip of recession because accountants are custodians of the nation’s economy, much has been said about corruption but the solution to our economic woe is ethics. ANAN do not joke with ethics because if you are ethically guided you will shun corruption in all its ramifications.” He posited.