Public service accounting officers warned

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Accountant General Dick Chela has called for discipline among public accounting officers whom he has warned against theft of funds and corruption.

Mr. Chela said in Kabwe today that his office will not take kindly to criminal activities and negative attitudes towards work among the officers who he also urged to give sound financial advice to controlling officers.

Mr Chela urged the officers to uphold good values of integrity, honest, ethical, commitment to work and hardworking adding that they should be in the first line of defence in the fight against corruption, fraud and other vices .

He said public service accounting officers are expected to bring greater oversight and supervisory roles into the financial system.

The accountant general said this when he addressed public service accountants drawn from both district and provincial offices of the central province in Kabwe today.

“As public accounting officers, you are further required to be ethical and exercise the most efficient and prudent course of action during the discharge of your duties. Embrace principles of control and feedback as integral parts of financial management,” he said.

Mr. Chela said he had no doubt that public accounting officers could inspire back public confidence in the government sector and push forward the development agenda for the good  of the nation.

He said government has articulated its long term development objectives in the national vision 2030 which shall be operationalized through the implementation of various policy documents including the Sixth National Development Plan (SNDP) 2011-2015.

Mr. Chela added further that government has also embarked on public financial management (PFM) reforms aimed at improving both reporting and utilization of public resources and thereby creating value by providing quality services to the Zambian citizens.

He cited some of the critical areas where public spending is being focused on in the SNDP as infrastructure development in the transport, communication and energy sectors.

Others are rural development by way of investments in feeder roads, tourist access roads and human development by increasing the quality of human capital as this was key to the economic development process.

Mr. Chela noted therefore that prudent management of financial resources was key to delivering better public services such as implementation of the integrated financial management information system (IFMIS) programme, adoption of international public sector accounting standards (IPSAS) and implementation of salaries direct debit and credit clearance (DDACC) system.

He said to achieve this, public service accounting officers are required to operate within the pronouncements of the public finance Act, 2004, and the financial regulations of 2006 among other pieces of financial regulation.