The Association of Accountancy Bodies in West Africa, ABWA hosted by The Gambia Association of Accountants (GAA) in Banjul on Monday began a three-day Training of Trainers on International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
The course, funded by the World Bank, is inline with the “Africa Regional Integration Assistance Strategy.
On May 9, 2011, the Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs Mr. Mambury Njie noted that a review of “accounting and auditing” practices in The Gambia under the report on the Observance of Standards and Codes (ROSC-A&A) initiative was conducted between February 1-12, 2010.
This, he said was meant to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the existing financial reporting infrastructure that underpins financial accounting and auditing practices in The Gambia.
In a statement relayed by the Permanent Secretary Serign Cham, Mr. Njie said from May 5-7, 2010, the findings were discussed with key stakeholders through the National Steering Committee chaired by the Governor of the Central Bank.
He said a Country Action Plan was developed to undertake the following activities: draft amendments to the Accountants Act to develop the Gambia Association of Accountants to a strong professional accountancy body as an ‘Institute’ in line with best practice recommended by the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC);
Take steps for setting up an independent audit oversight board to protect public interest; strengthen capacities of higher-education institutions to improve the quality of accountancy education in the country; and design and develop training programmes focusing on practical application of IFRS and IFRS for SMEs.
Mr. Njie revealed that by next week (May 16-19) a World Bank mission will carry out discussions with the key stakeholders on the development of a new legal framework for accounting and auditing.
He explained that the move is part of a “first initiative” project launched by the Bank following a request by the Government of The Gambia.
A Senior Financial Management Specialist, Winston Percy Onipede Cole-Snr. said the course is being done under ABWA for the Anglophone member countries, a separate event will be planned for Francophone countries.
“Such collaboration with ABWA as a regional institution is more economical and effective as it strategically targets our intervention in addressing national challenges with financial reporting infrastructure in the sub region in the sub-region; especially for Small and Medium Enterprises,” he said.
“A harmonized framework for financial reporting that is commonly understood and applied will improve the regional integration effort of economic community of west African states (ECOWAS).”
According to him, the expected outcome of the training is to enhance the understanding of participants to apply IFRS for SMEs to eligible entities based on particular jurisdictions. Source - The Voice