ECOWAS Auditors General Meet In Accra

From left Dr. Alfred Braimah, Mr. Thomas Mbomba and Mr. Justice Edward Amoako Asante interacting after the meeting.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Association of Supreme Audit Institutions (ECASAI) has held its second meeting in Accra with a call on heads of state auditing institutions in West Africa to remain independent in the conduct of their duties.
The three-day event, attended by auditors general from the West African Sub-region or their representatives, focused on forging a deeper cooperation as they discharge their duty of ensuring the prudent use of public funds.
Ghana’s acting Auditor General, Johnson Akuamoah Asiedu, who doubles as the interim chair of the Association in his welcome address noted that ECASAI, which is represented by all ECOWAS member states, held its first meeting in Accra in May 2019 to, among other things, network and provide assistance for one another for the improvement of good governance.
He said although the association is still young, there are indications that it would be of good service to citizens in the sub-region.
Mr Asiedu explained that the second meeting would focus on reviewing the constitution of the association and how to deepen cooperation among member states and provide technical assistance to support one another.
The Board Chairman of the Ghana Audit Service, Professor Edward Dua Agyeman, said it was also the role of an auditor general to ensure that auditors in public practice remained independent and worked for the benefit of the citizenry by ensuring that government officials spent public resources responsibly.
“You should be able to remain independent because, as auditors, you don’t belong to any of the three arms of government. Auditors are supposed to remain independent in their affairs, and that is very important,” he said.
Prof. Dua Agyeman, who is a founding member of the continental body of auditors out of which ECASAI was carved, noted that such associations were necessary because they provided the right fora for peer reviews and collaborations.
Such collaborations, he added, would help build the capacities of all the auditors general in West Africa and boost their confidence to remain independent in the discharge of their duties.
The President of the Community Court of Justice, ECOWAS, Justice Edward Amoako Asante, who also addressed the participants, urged members to make a collective commitment and effort at inception to make genuine contributions towards the success and sustenance of the association.
“It is important to remind you that an association is only as strong as the individual members, and its success or failure is dependent on the extent to which there is a collective commitment to the pursuit and defence of its interests,” he said.
Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Thomas Mbomba, assured participants at the meeting of the government’s commitment and support to the establishment of the association.
“Ghana fully supports the establishment of ECASAI and is pleased with the steps taken by this august body to develop its foundational documents, tools and a work plan to fulfil the vision of promoting good governance in ECOWAS member states.


By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri