Business News of Saturday, 17 September 2016
Professional accountants in the country have been encouraged to inculcate in their profession, principles that will promote good corporate governance in the various sectors which they operate.
Speaking at this year’s Presidential Luncheon themed: “Effective Governance in Organisations, the role of the Professional Accountant”, the President of the Institute of chartered of Accountants, Ghana, (ICAG), Christian Sottie, reminded the accountants of their role in national development, urging them to guard against all forms of malfeasance.
“Professional accountants have the immense role of enhancing transparency and accountability in corporate governance in both private and public sectors. We would have failed our nation if we do not.
The need for effective corporate governance is underlined by the necessity to protect and enhance shareholder value, achieve the company’s obligation to employees, and securing the interests of all stakeholders in the corporate environment. The goal is to guard against all manner of abuses capable of leading to scandals and financial crisis that can threaten corporate relationships,” Mr. Sottie said.
He further stated that the rot and indiscipline in the society these days require that much emphasis is placed on a set of professional knowledge, skills, value, ethics, values and attitudes broad enough to adapt to the dynamics in the business environment.
The Chief Justice, Mrs. Georgina Wood, in her speech, told the accountants that they have a critical role to play in the growth of their various organizations and the country at large, hence, applying ethical principles in their profession is not option.
“Some organizations have failed as a direct result of problems at the governance level which have negatively affected the synergy that must necessarily exist between management and staff and conduce to the general well-being of those organizations.
It therefore bears emphasis that good governance in both the public and private sectors is critical to engendering sustainable socio-economic growth and national development,” Mrs. Wood said.
Also addressing the accountants, Nii Apai Adumansa-Baddoo, Former Senior Consulting Lecturer in Governance at the University of Professional Studies, Accra, outlined some key principles that will help accountants to practice effective corporate governance framework.
Among the key principles he highlighted include the principle of disclosure and transparency, where he advised accountants to disclose all material matters regarding the corporation, including the financial situation, performance, ownership and governance of the company.
He further stated that accountants should act as a compliance with all regulatory requirements for the benefit of both board and management.
“The professional accountant has to deal decisively with agency problems, tunneling, power or ego crisis and non-compliance with applicable laws, rules and regulations.
In summary, the professional accountant acts as not only the key provider of financial information for decision making, but also as an advisor and consultant to the shareholders, board, management, regulatory, authorities and the customers who create the business and a compliance and conflict resolution expert,” Mr. Adumansa Baddoo said.