The 2nd ECOWAS ABWA Joint Congress has commenced at the Farmington Hotel in Harbel, Margibi County, Liberia.
The congress is organized by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Association of Accountancy Bodies in West Africa (ABWA) in collaboration with the Liberian Institute of Certified Public Accountants (LICPA).
This year’s congress is under the Theme: “Good Governance and Sustainable Development for Regional Prosperity”. The event and has brought together over two hundred delegates compromising professional accountants and members of professional accountancy organizations (PAOs) within the West African region.
Delivering the keynote address at the start of the congress on Thursday March 17, 2022, president George M. Weah praised members of the accountancy profession working in the public and private sectors for their role in providing accounting expertise in guiding financial planning and maintaining fiscal discipline which forms the basis of public trust, conference and values in ensuring accountability in the governance system.
“It is also important for us to recognize the importance of the accountancy profession in our countries. Accountancy professionals, whether in the private or public sector, provide accounting expertise to guide financial planning and to maintain fiscal discipline.” He noted.
He indicated that accountants lead or assist their institutions with the development and implementation of their corporate strategy and advisory services, institute measures to reduce costs by being efficient in their services, and mitigate and hedge against various types of risks, while maintaining high ethical standards.
President Weah has at the same time stressed that “the importance of good governance to achieve sustainable development is keen to the present and future prosperity. “This makes the theme for this Congress particularly relevant, as we search for lasting solutions to the many problems of underdevelopment that are common to the Member States of ECOWAS.”
The Liberian leader pointed out that the theme: “Good Governance and Sustainable Development for Regional Prosperity” corresponds with the core of the United Nation’s 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and the African Union’s 2063 aspirations for Africa.
He encouraged members of ECOWAS and the African continent to take the necessary steps by making choices in reducing the impact of climate change to support a long term economic growth.
He commended the leadership of the Liberian Institute of Certified Public Accountants for leading the efforts which led to the hosting of the 2nd ECOWAS ABWA Joint Congress 2022 for first time in Liberia.
For her part, the president of the Association of Accountancy Bodies in West Africa (ABWA) Madam Comfort Olu Eyitayo mni reminded professional accountants of their task in ensuring adequate financial and non-financial reporting and information across borders as well as promoting fiscal prudence on account of best practices in governance.
She described the partnership with ECOWAS as vital to the growth and development of the sub region.
The ABWA president also encouraged accountants to play a sustained advocacy role in supporting their governments with strategic ideas that will position the sub region to be a major partner in the global development drive.
Madam Eyitayo mni said “It is time to unlock the vast potential of the sub region for prosperity and inclusive growth.
In their remarks, the ECOWAS Finance Commissioner Madam Halima Ahmed and the president of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) Mr. Allan Johnson, described the hosting of the 2nd ECOWAS ABWA Congress as a unique opportunity to formulate strategic plans in furthering the accountancy profession across the sub region.
Speaking earlier, the president of the Liberian Institute of Certified Public Accountants Mr. Victor S.B.K Tanwone described the hosting of the congress in Liberia as a boost for the LICPA and a mark of historic achievement for Liberia as a country.
The congress is an annual event is aimed at enhancing coordination among member organizations of ABWA and to formulate new plans to foster the agenda of the association.
The Accountancy Bodies in West Africa was established in August 1982 in Lagos, Nigeria with the aim to develop and encourage professionalism in accountancy in West Africa, strengthen the accountancy profession in member countries, enhance technical competence and ethical standards of members among others.
ABWA is a member of the Pan-African Federation of Accountants (PAFA) a regional organization of professional accountants and accountancy bodies in Africa.