SWAIAP President, Nzechukwu calls for preventive measures to win war against corruption

…Calls for passage of Bill on Internal Auditing

From Cyriacus Nnaji, Lagos

President of Society for West African Internal Audit Practitioners (SWAIAP), Noble Patrick Nzechukwu has called on relevant authorities to put in place preventive measures in order to win the war against corruption.

He also called on the national Assembly to consider and ensure speedy passage of a bill he wrote on Internal Auditing practice in Nigeria.

Nzechukwu who is a chartered Accountant by profession and pioneer President of SWAIAP, took the stance at the Inaugural Induction/Investiture and Fellowship Award of SWAIAP at Lagos Airport Hotel, Ikeja-Lagos on Saturday, September 25, 2021.

The theme of the event was ‘Internal Auditing: Effective Tool for Anti-Corruption, Risk Management, Controls and Corporate Governance.’

Noble Patrick Onwura Nzechukwu who wrote the book, A to Z of Internal Audit Practice also spoke on how best to fight corruption Nzechukwu said “It is wrong to start fighting corruption when the deed has already been done, because that for me is not effective enough. If you want to go after treasury looters or people that have done wrong, you spend more resources, to catch a thief you must put some measures in place, but if you want to stop a thief you put preventive measures, as internal auditors we don’t emphasize on curing the disease, we emphasize on preventing the disease, for me it is the most effective way to fight corruption, instead of waiting till money has been looted, then you spend more money again to go after those that have looted it. The best thing is to stop them from looting, that is what we are doing.”

Nzechukwu who was also formally installed as the President/Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of SWAIAP said

Speaking on the Bill he wrote and submitted to the national assembly on how to protect the internal auditor from victimization and enhance the effectiveness of financial reporting in organizations and ensure corruption is reduced to the barest minimum, Nzechukwu disclosed that in 2013 he came up with a bill called ‘Nigerian Internal Audit Regulatory, Practice and Administration Agency and Other Related Mattes Bill.

“This is a bill I personally wrote in 2013, and I have submitted this bill to the National Assembly and also the Presidency,” Nzechukwu revealed.

He also disclosed that if the internal auditor is allowed to work unhindered the organization would benefit more “It is widely believed that the internal auditor if allowed to function without interference to its independence will reduce wastes, minimize fraud to the barest minimum; mitigate risks by identifying and recommending appropriate controls; enthrone good corporate governance and ensure compliance to policies, procedures, extant Laws and regulations.”

Nzechukwu said that internal auditor will add to what the external auditor has doing before now, because what the external auditor has been doing before now is to tell whether the financial result coming out from the organization represents the correctness of what was done, “but when we bring in an internal auditor into the fold, we are talking about how efficient, how effective and how economical the result you produce are.  It will add more value to what the external auditor is doing”.

Incorporated on the 22nd of June, 2018 with a vision to institutionalize internal auditing in West Africa as a foremost tool for anti-corruption, mitigation to the barest minimum of inefficiencies, ineffectiveness, wastes and other forms of financial and non-financial risks and to improve business processes and performance both in private and public sectors, SWAIAP also has the mission to review the current internal auditing practices in West Africa in comparison with global best practices.

Nzechukwu said it is unfortunate that the role of this dynamic and ever knowledgeable agent, serving the purpose of every functional area.

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