TWO YEARS AS HEAD OF THE INSTITUTE OF CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS (GHANA)
THE STORY SO FAR
For the third time in almost two years, B&FT met Mr Fred Moore at the ICAG office in Okponglo, East Legon. He walked us to his office and we could see the same steely-eyed determination we saw two years ago.
Mr. Fred Moore started with, “regardless of whether the public sector and economy are humming, or whether businesses generally and investors particularly shelter to protect assets, there is always a strong demand for advisors and business leaders with specialised skills from the InstituteÂÂ of Chartered Accountants (Ghana) to help smooth the business information flow.
“CA as a profession has a pivotal role in society, with members working in and influencing many facets of our economy; finance and banking industry and commerce, public practice and consulting, not-for-profit and public sector, and in education and academia. We have almost 4,000 members working in various parts of the Country and around, 10,000 talented students at different levels of the study working and undertaking the Chartered Accountant (CA) Programme.”
“Quality begets confidence, and the Institute achieves this through stringent education, training, and the professional development of members. The Institute’s strategic focus during 2014 had been to develop more targeted and effective student recruitment, sustain the chartered diploma courses, and support capacity-building of our public practice. The Institute has a key role in national development, hence our press releases on the World Cup cash-gate, our comment on the IMF development, and most recently the 2015 budget.”
“The Institute had a good 2014 year. I believe this is our defining moment as a professional body, to be able to predict and respond to the needs of members locally, to lead on issues at the regional forums and collaborate with our global partners.” “Our efforts in growth and capacity building have been recognised by the World Bank, and in 2013 ICAG was awarded a contract to assist Liberia Institute of Certified Public Accountants (LICPA) to develop its local capacity. It is gratifying to mention here that in November 2013, four Liberians qualified and two were admitted into membership in May 2014. The Institute in 2014 collaborated with or supported the following countries: Liberia, Gambia, Malawi and Sri Lanka.”
‘’Today, locally, Chartered Accountants and members of this institute are in roles that are the levers of business and economy. Many occupy such positions as CEOs, MDs, D-Gs, the Accountant-General, the Auditor-General, Senior Partners, of all audit practice firms etc. In addition, 80% of all CFOs in Ghana are members of the institute.”
The Institute of Chartered Accountants Ghana (ICAG) as part of its objective to train and equip professional accountants in the 21st century has revised its syllabus. The revised syllabus is to provide trainee accountants the tools and skills for to today’s business.
The implementation, which begins with 2015 May examinations, now has a three-level structure covering 14 subjects. The three levels are the knowledge (level 1), skills (level 2) and Professional (level 3). Exemptions are granted to students from some of the major universities studying Accounting and Finance etc., HND Accounting students and MBA Accounting and Finance graduates. No exemptions are given for the professional stage (level 3).
Mr Fred Moore, Chief Executive Officer, ICAG, told Business & Financial Times that, the revision was necessitated by the desire to keep pace with business processes and modern accounting practices. The cornerstone is the desireÂÂ to make ICAG one of the major professional bodies in Africa, to avail the opportunity for all the best and brightest students to pursue a professional accountancy qualification that will lead to world recognised designation of Chartered Accountant (CA).
He said that IFAC, the International accountancy body, is working with ICAG to enhance ICAG capacity to support other regional national bodies. Mr Moore said the grant had come at a time when the institute had embarked on a brand-awareness campaign, which started in 2014. In the addition to this campaign, the Institute has set up a Business Development Department under the Student Service Directorate.
According to the CEO, it aims to attract the best and brightest students from all major universities. As the saying goes, ‘’accounting is the language of business’’, every major economy has a major Institute at the heart of it. Chartered accountants provide financial advice, management, review and assurance to investors and stakeholders. The profession is the backbone of every successful major economy.
He said the Institute intends increasing its student population from the current number of 10,000 to 15,000 by 2015.
The Institute runs two distinct programmes, the professional Programme that leads to the prestigious CA designation and the technician programme, known as the Accounting Technician Scheme West Africa (ATSWA).