Stransact (Chartered Accountants), the correspondent firm in Nigeria for the 6th largest international accounting firm – RSM, has restated its commitment to promoting global standards and ethical practices in the conduct of audits.
Auditors are professional accountants authorised to review and verify the accuracy of financial records and ensure that organisations comply with relevant laws and regulatory frameworks.
Globally, strong ethics and credibility are crucial to the efficient conduct of audits since auditors are expected to be independent, reliable, honest, and carry out their duties without prejudice.
General Partner, Stransact, Eben Joels said: “The level of respect and trust you have in financial statements is directly proportional to the credibility of the auditor. Therefore, auditors should dispatch their jobs bearing in mind that their responsibility is not to make the client look good but to be accountable primarily to the client’s stakeholders, that is shareholders, investors, regulators, and employees.”
The General Partner encouraged accountants and auditors to follow ethical standards and best practices in the conduct of their duties.
The International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) has compiled the international Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants, which establishes the standard of behaviour expected of a professional accountant (PA).
The fundamental principles within the code include integrity, objectivity, professional competence and due care, confidentiality and professional behaviour.
According to Bola Mogaji, Partner, Audit Services, “credibility is a watchword that should not only be maintained but must be perceived and seen in all the engagements of professional accountants. The absence of this important virtue has led to the continuous series of recent accounting scandals and audit failures that have undermined the credibility of auditing and auditors.”
Victor Athe, Partner, Tax Services, listed some factors that impact the credibility of an auditor including objectivity, independence, integrity, professionalism, level of qualification, and trust.
Athe added, “Our affiliation with a strong international brand such as RSM is evidence of the level of our credibility.”
According to Yomi Salawu, the Partner, of People & Regulatory Services, “an auditor should not only profess to be independent but must also be seen as independent.”
“Anyone who lacks integrity is not expected to be seen around auditing. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) was deliberate in the choice of its motto – accuracy and integrity. Aside from accuracy, the auditor’s integrity is crucial,” said Salawu.