ICAN Begins Fieldwork On The 2022 Accountability Index

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) has commenced the fieldwork to prepare its 2022 version of the influential ICAN Accountability Index covering the 2022 and 2023 financial years. The most recent ICAN-AI appeared in 2021.

ICAN stated, “After a three-day intensive workshop, the ICAN-AI Assessors and Coordinators are presently on the field across all the States of the Federation, including the Federal Capital Territory, to collate data for the 2022 and 2023 assessments. The Assessors and Coordinators are equally retrieving information that is publicly available on the various entities’ websites.”

It added, “The Institute continues to appeal to all the relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to make the required information available to the Assessors and Coordinators and host the relevant information on their websites for easy accessibility and scrutiny. A few of these MDAs include the Office of the Accountants-General, Federal/States; Office of the Auditors-General, Federal/States; Budget Office of the Federation/Ministry of Budget and Planning States; Debt Management Offices Federal/States; Ministry of Federal Capital Territory/Ministry of Local Government; the National Assembly/State Houses of Assembly among others.”

Dr Innocent Okwuosa, ICAN President, said ICAN would soon commence a campaign to improve citizens’ knowledge and awareness of the Accountability Index  “to educate citizens to demand accountability from those charged with public sector governance”.

ICAN further stated, “To deepen awareness of the Index, the Governing Council has approved that a presentation be made at all the Institute’s conferences. Similarly, ICAN is aware that the report is somewhat abstract and has commissioned academic members to commence research that citizens can relate to. We also recently commissioned a stakeholder engagement subcommittee. One of the mandates of the subcommittee is to educate citizens to demand accountability from those charged with public sector governance.”

ICAN has pushed the Accountability Index to the attention of global bodies, the Pan African Accountancy Association and the International Federation of Accountants. The association is also working to get the World Bank to adopt the ICAN Accountability Index as one of the bases for assessing loan applications by national and subnational governments.

The ICAN President disclosed that the ICAN Accountability Index goes through a rigorous process to ensure accuracy and fairness.  The seven-stage process includes the selection of the adopted Public Expenditure and Accountability Framework (PEFA), the development of the ICAN-AI Framework, securing the support of the International Federation of Accountants and the Pan African Federation of Accountants (PAFA) and manpower training for the field teams.

Others are data gathering and scoring, development and application of the ICAN Assessment Tool (Cypher) and the compilation and presentation of the ICAN-AI Report.

The ICAN-AI is a more rigorous ranking of the states of the federation than the more straightforward look at their audit reports. ICAN stated, “The primary focus of the ICAN-Al is enhancing accountability in Federal, State and Local Governments. This is premised on the logic that governments at all levels should be instruments for improving the welfare of society. This is exemplified under Section 16(1) of the 1999 Constitution, where States must harness the nation’s resources to promote national prosperity and secure the economy while not sacrificing social justice and equity. The success of the 2018 and 2019 ICAN-Al assessment reports led to calls to expand the scope to government Ministries, Agencies and Departments (MDAs). This is undoubtedly a laudable expansion to PM assessment in Nigeria and one the Institute may consider in future.”

Jigawa, Kaduna and Bauchi made the top three in the composite ICAN-AI index for 2021, the latest assessment report that looked at 2020 results. COVID-19 caused ICAN to lose two years of assessment. Other states in the top ten are Edo, Niger, Osun, Kogi, Gombe, Enugu, and Kwara.

Elements of the ICAN-AI include Policy-based Fiscal Strategy and Budgeting, Budget Credibility,  Management of Assets and Debts, Control in Budget Execution, Accounting and Reporting,  and External Audit and legislative Scrutiny.

The ICAN Accountability Index featured prominently in the fourth Audit Reporting Training workshop of the FrontFoot Media Initiative held in Lagos.

Chido Nwakanma

Training Coordinator

 

ICAN-AI RANKING OF STATES FOR 2018 – 2021 FISCAL YEARS

S/NSTATE2021202020192018
1ABIA159225
2ADAMAWA13253636
3AKWA IBOM14183128
4ANAMBRA27272816
5BAUCHI3201511
6BAYELSA32362417
7BENUE24312113
8BORNO1783224
9CROSS RIVER21152622
10DELTA26223332
11EBONYI21262430
12EDO433735
13EKITI2519125
14ENUGU9628
15FGN2323103
16GOMBE891829
17IMO33313525
18JIGAWA1132
19KADUNA2211
20KANO3029820
21KATSINA19161731
22KEBBI1613114
23KOGI7779
24KWARA1020517
25LAGOS28242017
26NASARAWA29351834
27NIGER54413
28OGUN30332925
29ONDO1112910
30OSUN6131520
31OYO33342333
32PLATEAU1816612
33RIVERS37321336
34SOKOTO36282622
35TARABA2053313
36YOBE11112925
37ZAMFARA3336137

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