Skip to content

AAAG Promotes Prosperity Through Integrated PFM Governance

However long the night may last, there will be a morning – African proverb

A new era has been ushered in on the African continent with the holding of the first annual conference of the African Association of Accountants General (AAAG), that took place in Maseru, Lesotho, from the 19 to 22 February 2024. The conference brought together over 1000 government officials from across the African continent and beyond. The conference, themed, “Promoting a Prosperous Africa through Integrated Public Financial Management (PFM) Governance ” aimed to address critical issues related to public financial management and governance. The event was a significant milestone for the AAAG, which is a founding partner of the African Professionalisation Initiative (API), alongside other partners – AFROSAI-E, CREFIAF and PAFA.

Address by the Lesotho Hon. Minister for Finance

Hon. Dr Retselisitsoe Matlanyane – Minister for Finance Lesotho, Lethola Mokete – CEO LICPA , Likhafa Mahase – AAAG Chairperson

The opening ceremony was graced by a special guest of Honour, Hon. Dr Retselisitsoe Matlanyane, the Minister for Finance and Development Planning in the Kingdom of Lesotho. She called on the delegates to take action on the realization of effective Public Finance governance. Her powerful and inspiring speech encouraged the collaborative spirit within AAAG, noting that it will bring prosperity to African nations by enabling the adoption of an agile and highly adaptive approach to PFM governance that priorities the needs of the citizens. There was need to address sustainability agenda in governance within Africa. She observed that the African Union (AU) agenda 2063 once implemented successfully will take Africa forward. As trusted advisers of financial matters, government accountants were challenged to live up to the high standards of professionalism.

She highlighted the fact that there’s increased risk in a fast-changing service terrain and thus the need to embed agility in the service delivery models of the public sector.  She called on Accountants General to entrench accountability as a core duty and responsibility in serving the public interest. She underscored that doing so is a fiduciary duty that requires discharging the functions of the Accountants General transparently and diligently on behalf of citizens that have pinned their hopes and aspirations on a properly functioning PFM and public service system.  She urged accountants to stand in defence of good finance management governance for the benefit of vulnerable citizens. Integrity of public sector entities will be measured by timely and high-quality reports on compliance, performance and financial accountability. Therefore, Accountants General should embrace the philosophy of accounting for impact.

The Hon. Minister noted that political will is essential for the success of PFM reforms and governments should encourage and support strengthening of PFM systems and practices. The African Union (AU) was lauded by the Hon Minister for supporting adoption of accrual IPSAS across Africa. She further observed that there is need for robust risk management frameworks to address the everchanging and volatility of risks that countries and governments face.

She urged governments to adopt innovative technologies for improvement of service delivery. Accountants General should support the adoption of these innovative technologies and accelerate realisation of benefits for citizens in need of essential services.

Key Speakers at the Conference

Delegates attending the 1st annual conference of the AAAG

The Chairperson of the AAAG who also serves as the Accountant General for the Kingdom of Lesotho, Likhapha Mahase, noted that the AAAG conference was a great day in the history of the accounting profession. She informed the delegates that donors and development partners had requested the groupings of Accountants General to form a single continental body that they could engage with centrally. This therefore is the culmination of a great milestone for the African continent. Currently, Lesotho is the chair of AAAG while Ivory Coast is the vice chair. She indicated that future advancement and modernisation of PFM is the main goal of AAAG. This will be done through professionalism, ethical conduct, and technical understanding of Finance Management tenets.

The Principal Secretary (PS) for Finance, Hon. Nthoateng Lebona noted the need to increase policy and technical training for Public Officers on Public Finance Management (PFM). In particular, she observed the need to embed the Treasury Single Account (TSA) and IPSAS accrual reporting implementation successfully by governments. Embracing Technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Integrated Finance Management Information System (IFMIS) will integrate appropriate solutions to advance good PFM.

The CEO of AAAG, Fredrick Riaga informed the delegates that AAAG is a forum for collaboration among Accountants General. AAAG will advance PFM value systems that can be leveraged to advance national development and productivity for the transformation of Africa. He noted that, the conference would delve into the impact of technology on the delivery of Public Finance Management reforms through the work and mandate of Accountants General. He encouraged delegates to network and share experiences during and after the conference.

In his closing remarks, the Minister for Natural Resources, Hon. Mohlomi Moleko, challenged the political, policy and technical leaders present to support the initiatives and investments towards adoption and implementation of International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS). He thanked the AAAG leadership for organising an extremely successful inaugural conference.

Topics Covered

Delegates attending the 1st annual conference of the AAAG

The conference covered a wide range of topics that are crucial for the effective management of public finances. These included: Integrating Africa for Continental Growth and Shared Prosperity; Good Governance, Transparency, and Accountability in the Public Sector; The Future-Relevant Public Sector Accountant; Public Sector Risk Governance and Ethical Considerations; The Public Sector Finance Management Cycle; Information Systems in the Public Sector; Capacity Building and Professionalisation in the Public Sector;  and Fighting Money Laundering and Illicit Financial Flows in Africa.

The discussions at the conference highlighted the importance of integrating Africa for continental growth and prosperity. Delegates shared insights on the role of good governance, transparency, and accountability in the public sector, recognising the need for ethical considerations and risk governance. The conference also focused on the future relevance of public sector accountants, emphasizing the importance of adapting to evolving financial management practices and technologies. Furthermore, the event addressed the critical issue of combating money laundering and illicit financial flows in Africa, underscoring the need for concerted efforts to address these challenges.

The AAAG’s commitment to professionalisation and capacity building in the public sector was evident throughout the conference. As a founding partner of the African Professionalisation Initiative (API), the AAAG aims to increase the number of competent, ethical, and influential professionals who can support accountability, transparency, and good financial governance in the African public sector. The API’s overarching goal aligns with the themes discussed at the conference, emphasizing the importance of fostering a cadre of skilled professionals equipped to address the complex financial management and governance issues facing the continent.

The 1st annual conference of the AAAG served as a platform for robust discussions and knowledge sharing, providing attendees with valuable insights and best practices in public financial management. The event underscored the importance of collaboration and cooperation among African nations to address the challenges and opportunities in the realm of public financial management. As the AAAG and its partners continue to champion professionalisation and good governance, the conference marked a significant step toward achieving a prosperous and transparent financial landscape across the continent.

The second (2nd) AAAG conference will be held in the republic of Tanzania.

About The API – Our Purpose (Objective)

The API is an independent non-profit organisation whose primary objective is to strengthen the capacity and knowledge base of accounting and auditing professionals in the African public sector to enhance accounting and auditing service delivery to the citizens of Africa.

The API Vision and Mission

Our Vision: An African public sector capacitated with competent, ethical and influential professionals who support accountability, transparency and good financial governance. Our Mission: To grow the capacity of accountancy professionals in the African public sector for enhanced service delivery.

The API Houses / Learning Programmes

You can learn offline and update your records the next time you have access to the internet. Learning takes 12 to 18 months to complete.

Please choose below the house that works for you and drop us a mail –

Houses (Learning Programmes)

Careers / Jobs for API Graduates

House 1 – Incumbents (Experienced un-professionalised accountants and auditors)-Implemented ✔ Government Accountant
✔ Budget Analyst
✔ Financial controller
✔ Auditor
✔ Tax examiner
✔ Public Financial Management Consultant
✔ Non-profit Accountant
✔ Financial Analyst
✔ Grants and Contracts Manager
✔ Compliance Officer
✔ Public Sector Financial Reporting Specialist
House 2 – Specialisation – Ready for occupation from 2024
House 3 – Students – Ready for occupation in 2025
House 4 – Micro credentials – Unique Areas of need by governments : E.g. The 1 month Ethics and Accountability Certification that is available for all government officers etc.
House 5 – Continuing Professional Development (CPD) – Book an event here

The API Partner Organisations

The API Learning Programmes aim to achieve the above institutional goal as a partnership between the accountancy profession (represented by the Pan African Federation of Accountants (“PAFA”)), accountants general or their equivalent (African Association of Accountants General – “AAAG”)), and supreme audit institutions or courts of auditors (represented by the English (“AFROSAI-E”) and French (“CREFIAF”) language sub-groups of the African Organisation of Supreme Audit Institutions (“AFROSAI”)).

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.