ed http://chernichovsky.com/wp-admin/includes/user.php geneva; color: #222222; font-size: small;”>CEO of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Uganda [CPA] Derrick Nkajja said on Tuesday that it was unfortunate for the media and other national and international stakeholders to hold a blanket perception that public accountants are stirring corruption scandals especially in government agencies.
“Our core principle as accountants is that we are stewards of somebody else’s belongings. If there is any kind of swindling or embezzlement of public funds, it should be counted on those put in charge to those agencies” he said.
For long there have been accusations that accountants working in government bodies tend to connive with officials and other professionals, leading to disappearance of public funds for instance through payment of inflated costs for incomplete or substandard work done on roads or hospitals.
Though the establishment of accountability bodies like the IGG and the DPP was expected to rid the civil service of high corruption rates, failure to reduce cases of thieving government accountants has prompted demands for broader scrutiny over the conduct of government accounting staff.
While addressing the media at the Serena hotel in Kampala, Nkajja admitted that most people in the accounting profession are being used as tools by politicians and other top civil servants to commit such grave offenses, adding that sometimes the perpetrators get away with their loots while the accountants act as their shields.
While he admitted that accountancy is one of the most scientific means to whistle blowing, and busting perpetrators, he noted that it is quite a risky venture to take.
“Of course our accountants have tried to expose such wrong doings without injuring themselves. There is even the Whistle blowing Act helping us in this cause, but then we end up being killed.”
“Our fraternity has so far lost three top accountants to gun shots for merely attempting to expose perpetrators intelligence.”
He asserted that if the fight against corruption in Uganda is to materialize, government security operatives who are at the entrance of the criminal justice system must express utmost will and capacity to pick up the evidence obtained from accounts and audit reports and use it against the culprits.
Nkajja was speaking ahead of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) Small and Medium Practices Forum that is slated for tomorrow June 5th at the Kampala Serena.
The one day forum will bring together professional accounting organizations from over 30 countries across the world.
The forum he said will discuss challenges facing small and medium size practices and enterprises (SMP’s and SME’s) with a focus on Africa.
SME’s make up more than 90% of Uganda’s private sector and contribute approximately 75% of the country’s GDP.
Speaker of Parliament Rt. Hon Rebecca Kadaga is expected to officiate at the function while some of the key speakers will include Fayez Choudhury of the International Federal of Accountancy, Dr Mussa J. Assad head of the African Federation of Accountants, Naru Thakkar, Giancarlo Attolini, Vickson Ncube and many others.