These include creating a culture that promotes effective financial and performance management; reducing irregular, unauthorised, and fruitless and wasteful expenditure; and improving service delivery. Therefore, our call is to galvanise all stakeholders behind the drive to accelerate improvements in accountability.
The improvements we seek do not only reside within the domain and responsibility of the accounting officer or authority and the auditors – they depend on the entire accountability ecosystem, which includes various role-players who all need to play their part effectively to enable a culture of accountability in sustainable and meaningful ways.
Who should act?
There is a multitude of role-players that function at different levels – leadership and decision-making, support, intervention and oversight. We assert that when national and provincial leaders fully commit to transforming government into the capable, efficient, ethical and development-oriented institutions envisaged by the Constitution, significant improvements are bound to follow. Early victories are evident in instances where leadership has moved beyond politics and obstacles and taken definite steps to prioritise creating a better future for the communities they serve.
What is the role of each key role-player in providing assurance?
The mandates of key role-players are well defined in the legislation. The figure below gives an overview of their key responsibilities.
All these role-players have multiple responsibilities, and for any endeavour to succeed, everyone involved should share the common goal of improving audit outcomes and, ultimately, the service delivery that will have a positive impact on the lives of citizens. We encourage all role-players to diligently execute their responsibilities, abide by the applicable rules and take full responsibility for their part in the accountability process.
When all parties commit and become responsive to risks and challenges, a culture of accountability will translate into improved control environments. Below, we highlight the crucial matters that should be attended to or implemented to improve audit outcomes.
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