IDI Speech

Mr. Alain Roger Memvuh Lindouyou, M anager Capacity Development at IDI,
Resource Persons; mentors.
Dr. Sutthi Suntharanurak from State Audit Office of the Kingdom of Thailand ,
Ms. Llewelyn R. Terlaje form Office of Public Accountability – Guam and
Mr. Chandra Kant Bhandari from my office
Deputy Auditors General,
Assistant Auditors General,
Coordination team to support this event from my office,
Directors and other staffs from my Office and
The Media
Good morning and Namaste to you all.

It’s my great privilege to be here with you all in this morning. It gives me immense pleasure to inaugurate and deliver opening remarks to this program on Audit Review Meeting relating to performance Audit of Institutional Framework for Fighting Corruption as part of IDI’s (INTOSAI Development Initiative) global program on SAI Fighting Corruption. As a head of SAI Nepal, I would like to welcome and wish to have your pleasant stay in Nepal. At the same time I would like to express my sincere appreciation and thanks to the IDI for providing the opportunity to us to host the program.

Corruption is a serious crime and a major barrier to economic prosperity,  social and all form of equality. It erodes trust in government, affects economic and financial stability, threatens investment in the country and curtails the fundamental and basic rights of citizen. It comes in various forms and a wide array of illicit behaviors, such as bribery, extortion, fraud, nepotism, graft, speed money, pilferage, theft, and embezzlement, falsification of records, kickbacks, influence peddling, and campaign contributions.  So, every society, sector and citizen should be united to fight against corruption to ensure effective and efficient use of public resources and deliver public services to the citizen.

Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) are unique institutions in any governance structure worldwide. They are entrusted with independent examination of public resources use by the executives. SAI and its auditors are provided with, in one or another way to examine whether executives have used resources entrusted to them with due regards to regularity and with the principles of economy, efficiency and effectiveness. In this regards, supreme audit institutions have even more demanding roles to fight against corruption. SAIs can be key players in the fight against corruption. By virtue of their oversight function, they can promote integrity, accountability and transparency thus, enabling environment for good governance.

 

Audits can focus on risks areas and help in building robust and effective internal controls in public institutions that contribute to the prevention of corruption. By reporting their audit findings to Parliament and publicizing them, SAIs contributes to a climate of transparency that assist in prevention and detection of corruption.  The parties involved in corruption leave very little telltale in the form of irrefutable hard evidence. Most of the corruption takes place in an informal manner and under the dark cover of isolated contacts. At times it does not even require a spoken word. Mere eye contact can establish a relationship of corruption.

In such situation the auditors, whose profession makes them concentrate on documentary or physical evidence, often find it hard to gather such evidences. But the social expectations are that the auditors should play an effective role indicating the areas for reducing, if not eliminating corruption.

SAI can contribute in various ways to fight against corruption. SAIs may put high risk areas leading to corruption at top priority for audit in their plans, policies and strategies and conduct and report issues accordingly. SAIs may lead being a role-model of integrity, transparency and accountability. This exemplary behavior of SAIs will help other public institutions to follow SAIs’ practices in creating and enhancing national integrity system.

By assessing and supporting for preparedness and implementation of Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development Goals, SAIs can help to achieve Goal 16 on “Promote Peaceful and Inclusive Societies for Sustainable Development, Provide Access to Justice for All and Build Effective, Accountable and Inclusive Institutions at all Levels”, and in particular SDG “Target” 16.5 “substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms”.

SAIs may collaborate with stakeholders including the law enforcing agencies and civil society organization for fighting against corruption in united manner.
In Nepal, SAI’s Strategic Plan 2016-20, Operational Plan 2016-20 and Auditor General’s Action Plan 2017-2023 emphasize to select high risk areas as its audit subjects. Auditor General’s Action Plan requires audit divisions to identify the public officials and the entity which are prone to misuse of public funds and accordingly frame the audit strategy for those entities. We have implemented risk-based audit approach. We have also started “auditing leadership”, which will  help to hold public official more accountable in their performance as poor results demonstrated by audit will impact their career development. We have started engaging stakeholders in our audit processes particularly in performance audits.

I am aware that IDI is initiating several programme to develop the capacity of the public auditors. Recently, it has focused on emerging trend of auditing such as: Audit of SDG preparedness, disaster related audit, IT audit, public debt audit, CSO engagement in audit cooperative audit etc. However, the audit demands multifaceted approaches. The generalist auditors may not impart required level of output. Thus, IDI need to focus on increasing the capacity of auditors in technical audit. I hope IDI will focus in this area in coming days.

At this moment, I have a pleasure to inform you that SAI Nepal is serving in a capacity of ASOSAI Governing Board member and we are nominating our candidacy for the same capacity next term too in forthcoming Assembly of ASOSAI, which is going to be held in Hanoi Vietnam in September 2018. In this context, I would like to request all of you to convey my message to your Heads of SAI that your support will encourage us to work in this ASOSAI community for our mutual interest.

At this program, I believe that audit teams from all participating SAIs will have good opportunity to interact with each other and learn good practices in fighting against corruption. As a result of this program, each participating SAIs will come up with practicable and actionable recommendation in fighting against corruption in their audit reports and reported to their respective governments.

Nepal is a beautiful country with the gift of nature and cultural heritage.  I hope this occasion will help you to make familiar with our sociocultural structure. At the end of the program I hope that you will be able to know about Nepalese society. Your accommodation has been managed at the centre of the city. You can walk around and find new experiences. To facilitate this program Director Satya Thapa and his team have been deputed. They will take care about your requirements. Please do not hesitate to contact them.  I wish you all a pleasant and memorable stay in Kathmandu.
I wish every success of the program.
Thank you all.

Tanka Mani Sharma (Dangal)
Auditor General
Office of the Auditor General of Nepal
2 July 2018

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