ECSAFA 5th Congress - Bringing Africa Together
The 5th Congress of the Eastern, Central and Southern Federation of Accountants (ECSAFA) was held from 4 to 6 July in Mauritius. Attended by nearly 300 participants, this regional event attracted 75 foreign delegates from the 15 member countries of the Federation.
The Congress was officially opened by the acting Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of Mauritius, Mr. Paul Berenger. In his opening address, Mr Berenger paid tribute to ECSAFA for aiming to achieve unity, collaboration and co-operation among African accountants and also for the organisation�s efforts to develop world-class competence and promote good governance.
Mr Berenger pointed out the need for accountants to win back the confidence of the business community and the general public following the Enron debacle and more recently, of WorldCom. He added that Mauritius planned to review the institutional and regulatory framework for the profession. The preparation of an action plan, as well as a report on the observance of standards and codes for accounting and auditing practices is already under way.
According to Mr. Berenger, there is consensus that the observance of international standards and codes of best practice would strengthen national and international financial systems. He made it clear that in the case of Mauritius, the 2001 Companies Act provides for the preparation of accounts according to International Accounting Standards.
In thanking Mr Berenger, President of ACCA Mauritius, Mr. Rajun Jugurnath encouraged Congress delegates to integrate the issues arising from national and regional frameworks, so as to ultimately better the condition of ECSAFA member states.
ECSAFA President Mr. Daryl Benecke of Zimbabwe officially launched a report prepared on behalf of ECSAFA on �Governance in the Public Sector. The acting Prime Minister commented that the publication should prove to be of significant practical educational value to the Public Sector throughout the region.
Several high profile local and international speakers presented technical topics geared towards bringing Africa together, including Sir David Tweedie, Chairman of the International Accounting Standards Board.
During the gala dinner, the members of the executive committee of the ECSAFA expressed their heartfelt thanks to Mrs. Anthea Rose, Chief Executive of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants for her continued support of the accountancy profession in the region.
ECSAFA's next regional Congress is scheduled for 2004 in Gaborone, Botswana.
George Chan Pat Young