The Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators in Zimbabwe has launched a public sector accounting qualification that is designed to strengthen the capacity of public sector accounting professionals in Zimbabwe.
The qualification is open to senior executives in the public sector with appropriate working experience in institutions that include state-owned enterprises, parastatals, schools, universities and hospitals.
Those who pursue the qualification will be able to become public sector accountants after passing and completing the two-year course, which will enable them to apply technical, strategic and leadership skills in their daily work.
The qualification will help them gain access to vast knowledge of the accounting profession through interacting with professionally qualified tutors as well as networking with other experts in the accounting field.
The qualification also provides exposure to new and fresh ideas through unlimited access to continuous professional development (CPD) workshops and seminars that are run regularly by ICSAZ.
The programme consists of seven models, namely Applied Governance, Risk and Compliance, Advanced Accounting and Financial Reporting, Corporate Secretarial Practice, Development of Strategy, Audit and Assurance, Public Finance Management and Corporate Law.
Addressing guests at an official launch cocktail on Monday evening (April 1) at Cresta Lodge in Harare, Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube congratulated ICSAZ on coming up with this qualification and said government would fully support this initiative.
“It is my expectation and that of government that the graduates from this institution will work harder on the achievements that have been made to date.
“It is also my hope that the introduction of this qualification will enhance our work as government and drastically reduce some of the inefficiencies in government systems,” he said.
Professor Ncube went on to say the commitment of the second republic towards enhancing education is not in doubt.
“We are committed to ensuring that all higher education institutions in this country get their fair share of development projects to enable them all to meet their obligations more effectively.
“Financial literacy today holds a great deal of importance in society, particularly following the global financial crisis that shook our world.
“Due to this situation, the need for financial and economic education has increased, notably for civil servants in finance departments across various governments.
“Government fully supports your vision as evidenced by the support you are already receiving from various government structures and departments,” he said.
Professor Ncube added that the launch has also come at a good time when government is in the process of migrating from a cash basis accounting system to an accrual basis accounting system.
ICSAZ President Mrs Letitia Gaga pointed out that, although the institute’s curriculum was producing a wholesome professional accountant, it was more biased towards the private sector and therefore the institute had reviewed the curriculum to include the public sector’s financial management.
“The institute trains professional accountants and chartered secretaries who currently occupy key positions in the public sector.
“As the institute of choice, we are committed to seeing the development of our nation through training and seeing the nation achieve the vision to become an upper middle class economy by 2030,” Mrs Gaga added.
International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) chief operating officer Ms Alta Prinsloo, who was among the guests at the ceremony, congratulated ICSAZ on launching the qualification and wished the institute all the best in its endeavour to train public sector accountants not only in Zimbabwe but the whole of southern Africa.
Other guests at the launch included Public Accountants and Auditors Board Secretary Mr Admire Ndurunduru, Auditor General Mildred Chiri and International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board chairman Mr Ian Carruthers and his Technical Advisor, Mr David Watkins.