For the first time since its formation, Liberia’s Supreme Audit Institution (SAI), the General Auditing Commission (GAC), has launched an institution-wide capacity-building exercise aimed at professionalizing its audit and administrative staff.
Trainees of the workshop
The ongoing professional training program provides staff the opportunity to earn credibility and respect in their professional career, and at the same time, enhance their potentials on the job and ensure the advancement of their individual professional careers.
It is part of the Commission’s three-year Capacity-building Strategy, currently sponsored by the European Union (EU) through its 11th European Development Fund (EDF) Project.
The Initial pilot phase of the Strategy was financed through the World Bank Multi-donor pool fund administered by the Integrated Public Financial Management Reform Project (IPFMRP).
This exercise, according to the GAC management, adds value to audit and administrative staff at all stages of their careers, as well as provides means by which other institutions of government can benefit from such expertise when they leave the employ of the GAC.
For staff in Audit Services, the training covers professional certification programs such as the Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA), Certified Accounting Technician (CAT) and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountant (ACCA). Programs offered for those in Administration include the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), the Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) and Project Management Professional (PMP), among others.
Till date, 229 GAC auditors and 17 administrative staff have been enrolled into tuition classes consistent with the aforementioned professional certification programs. In addition, 17 support staff have already been enrolled at the Liberia Institute of Public Administration (LIPA) where they will attend training classes for a number of important courses.
Liberia’s Auditor General Yusador S. Gaye has attributed the three-year intensive professional training to her Administration’s commitment to ensuring the necessary professional certifications of her staff, further indicating that her personnel foremost priority should be their professional careers during their stay at the GAC and after they leave the walls of the General Auditing Commission.
It is worth noting that several employees of the GAC have already completed professional certification programs under the aforementioned pilot program, with some receiving the CISA credential, while others achieved certifications as Chartered and Management Accountants respectively.
The total cost of the GAC Capacity-Building Strategy is estimated at US$1.2 million, an amount that the EU has already committed to finance.