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IoDZ pushes for stronger audit committees

Catherine Nyachionjeka

THE Institute of Directors Zimbabwe (IoDZ) has urged companies to take board audits seriously.

IoDZ chief executive officer Catherine Nyachionjeka told NewsDay Business on the sidelines of a masterclass board audit committee workshop in Kariba last week that audit committees are critical to business.

“IoDZ would like to see all sectors taking board audit issues seriously. (We don’t expect) people who have no clue of what they are doing,” she said.

“Many times people are appointed to boards and start working with no clue of where they are supposed to be going, without value addition. Organisations are taking a leap into capacitating directors. It shows that they are taking this seriously.

“We are equipping directors to give correct oversight, to understand what they are supposed to do in the boardroom. It is encouraging to see organisations taking up these initiatives.”

The workshop trained directors in various areas, including the role of audit committees, legal compliance enforcements, cybersecurity and virtual oversight roles.

Nyachionjeka said IoDZ had a holistic approach to director development.

“We are trying to look at how to make organisations as sustainable as possible,” she said.

The purpose of an audit committee is to provide oversight to financial reporting processes, audit processes, internal control systems and compliance with laws and regulations.

“We need to talk about audits,” she said.

“We want to address the sustainability issue of our corporates. Sometimes people think that audits are done to pick (fraud) but they mitigate risks (that end up with) company closures,” she said.

Nyachionjeka said it was encouraging to note that small-to-medium scale enterprises were taking audit issues seriously.

“It actually means they are now taking compliance issues seriously. To me it means governance is something people are taking seriously. If we are sitting here and we have only big companies, we will be preaching to the converted but if we attract small-to-medium scale enterprises, we are progressing,” Nyachionjeka said.

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