An Internal Audit Unit (IAU) has been set up in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Management with the mandate to review the processes and controls of government to create greater efficiencies and financial management.
On Tuesday, Chief Internal Auditor of the IAU Romilly Murrain signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Auditor General Florence Lee which outlines the basis for collaboration between the two offices in fostering the values of good governance in the discharge of their statutory and professional duties.
Lee said after the signing the MOU mandates that both entities meet each March to work out a calendar of activities for the year, so as to avoid overlaps and duplicating efforts.
There are some areas where we won't be able to avoid overlaps as we cannot look at financial records without researching the controls in place which validate the government's accounts, explained the Auditor General. However, we will work to ensure that both external and internal audits achieve the expected results.
Murrain added that her unit's focus is wider than the financial elements and encompasses efficiency, monetary compliance and risk management.
The government's Internal Audit Advisor Mathew Byrne said the need for a separate unit is critical at this juncture when funds are becoming more limited and the government has to pursue options that bring value for money.
Over the coming days IAU plans to meet with all accounting officers to orient them to how their unit works and what information they will be looking for to make assessments and recommendations.