Building a brighter future for government auditing in South Africa

14 April 2008

Although South Africa's public sector generally experiences skills shortages at many levels, the financial sector is particularly adversely affected. Whilst the private sector has in operation a highly effective system to ensure a constant supply of financial skills, no such system has to date been implemented for the public sector. To address the above shortcoming, the Southern African Institute of Government Auditors (SAIGA) has developed a unique public sector professional: the Registered Government Auditor (RGA). The syllabus of the RGA is public sector focused and incorporates concepts and approaches based on the PFMA, MFMA and the Treasury Regulations. The RGA-model must be seen against the background of initiatives such as the Joint Initiative on Priority Skills Acquisition (JIPSA) and the broader objectives of the Accelerated and Shared Growth Initiative of South Africa (ASGISA). It also contributes towards the professionalisation of the Auditor-General and ensures that the Auditor- General maintains the independence that is required by our country's Constitution. Wider recognition of the RGA by specific role-players and the integration of the RGA-concept in strategic approaches by specific public sector entities and universities will provide a continued long term supply of financially skilled professionals to the public sector. This is exactly what South Africa needs.