The Governing Board (GB) of the Asian Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (ASOSAI) opened its 46th Meeting at the Asian Development Bank on February 19, 2013 with emphasis on transparency and accountability. ASOSAI Chairman Mr. Vinod Rai, Comptroller and Auditor General of India, pointed out the challenges for Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) to ensure public accountability to a more discerning and empowered citizenry who demands transparency in government dealings, in his opening address to the GB.
“The public today is wanting the government to be transparent in all its activities, all its budgetary dealings to the extent that it is a challenge on public auditors to ensure financial accountability of the executive, to provide assurance to the man on the street,” observes Mr. Rai.
He added: “Public Audit as we have known has transformed and our accountability to the general public is at an all time high. It is in this environment that we conduct our deliberations in the 46 th Governing Board with the firm knowledge and realization of he immense responsibility that we need to shoulder and are indeed proud to shoulder.”
46th GB Meet host Philippine Commission on Audit (COA) Chairperson Ma. Gracia M. Pulido Tan, in welcoming the delegates, expressed COA’s warmest welcome and remarked that the Commission “has been both a privileged beneficiary and committed participant of ASOSAI and INTOSAI initiatives and activities.” “Truly, we thank the ASOSAI for its tremendous support for institutional development and capacity building, not only to us but to all its members. By these, we have not only become more efficient, effective, competent and strong SAI; we have likewise been able to share knowledge and experiences with fellow SAIs, and have been honoured to chair the Training Committee of the newly established ASEANSAI,” Chairperson Tan said. ( See full text of COA Chairperson Tan’s welcome address on page 4- ed ). Among the issues discussed in the 46 th GB Meet were the implementation of the ASOSAI Strategic Plan for 2011-2015, strengthening cooperation with other INTOSAI regional groups,result of the 10th Research Project, training-related activities and implementation of international standards for SAIs.
Chairman Rai expressed his gratitude to members for their cooperation and support for the Strategic Plan and reminded the body the need to draft the next plan. On strengthening cooperation with other regional groups, Mr. Rai mentioned the EUROSAI seminar on the “Application of Software Tools Audit” held in Czech Republic and the coming 2 nd ASOSAI-EUROSAI Joint Conference. Another encouraging news was the 10th ASOSAI Research Project on “Audit to Detect Fraud and Corruption: Evaluation of the Fight against Corruption and Money Laundering” which drew the largest participation (22 SAIs) for research projects so far.
The ASOSAI-sponsored workshop on “Dealing with Fraud and Corruption” was held in the Philippines from November 12-17, 2012 for which an Instructors’ Design meeting was held in Tokyo in July 2012; and a JICA- sponsored seminar on “Improvement of Audit Process for More Effective Audit” was organized in Tokyo from May 28-June 6, 2012. Training related matters raised in the meeting were the need to increase ASOSAI- sponsored workshops, details of per diem and travel expenses, and internal and external funding. IDI Director General Magnus Borge also addressed the Board on the continuing cooperation between the ASOSAI and IDI and updated the body on the implementation of the International Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions, a priority program of the IDI.