Audit firms are producing poor reports – ICPAU

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Audit firms in Uganda are still producing poor audit reports that are tarnishing the image of local audit firms, a survey by the Institute Certified of Public Accountants of Uganda (ICPAU) on the quality of audit firms has shown.

To reverse the poor auditing situation, the ICPAU –which is the steering committee on audit, says the audit firms must put in measures that will enable them to conduct proper auditing and produce quality reports.

Presenting the committee’s survey results during the accountants’ Practitioners’ Forum the managing Partner of Jim Roberts & Associate, Mr Julius Tumuhimbise said the Institute’s Audit Quality Review team had made several revelations within the ongoing fourth audit quality review cycle during which a total of 181 audit firms were surveyed.

“We found out there is lack of partner input; limited appreciation of technical and documentation requirements; failure to devote sufficient time and attention to planning the audit, lack adherence to audit procedures,” he said.

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Mr Tumuhimbise said the other reasons why Uganda’s local audit firms perform poorly are to inappropriateness of staff turnover, lack of standardised audit programmes which leads poor quality control measures at the firms, inconsistency and engagement levels.

He also said that the quality of the audit report, which feeds into companies’ quality of financial reports is key to informed markets and investors.

“The committee has suggested that ICPAU has to put up more stringent sanctions for firms with consistent low quality work put clear remediation plans to assist firms to improve on audit quality.

The use of technology in accounting creates effectiveness and transparency in the auditing process and enables businesses to become more efficient said Winfred Tarinyeba Kiryabwire Associate Professor School of Law School of Makerere University.

“However, the manual work of accountants will still be required in specific areas like analysing and advising the companies on matters regarding their financial position, where they need to improve, whether they are borrowing so much,” Ms Kiryabwire said.

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