Under fire Executive Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), Nathaniel R. Patray, has emphasized the need for prudent debt management, not only for development but also to ensure macroeconomic stability.
Speaking Monday during the opening a WAIFEM (West African Institute for Economic Management) regional course on Auditof Public Debt Management taking being held at the CBL Auditorium 10-14 June 2019, Mr. Patray said it is important that auditors and audit institutions understand public debt management arrangements so that they can be able to develop an effective audit approach.
He said, this must be regularly reviewed to ensure that any significant changes and developments are reflected in current and future audits and that public debt management activities are consistent with IMF/World Bank guidelines.
Some of the benefits that Governor Patray attributed to performance audits of debt management practices included, Encouragement for governments to produce better financial information and publish key debt information to analyze, and assess their financial vulnerability and exposure;Assessment of how well governments perform in the release of data disclosure; Encouragement for governments to focus more on vulnerability monitoring and give high priority to risk management.
Executive Governor Patray reiterated that public finance management is an inseparable and indispensable condition for the good conduct and functioning of a country.
“As a matter of fact, empirical evidence supports the view that the higher the quality of a country’s policies and institutions, the better is its capacity to carry debt and withstand exogenous shocks”, Executive Governor Patray said. He lauded Liberia for making strides in improving public debt management, including the establishment of several agencies such as the Public Procurement and Concessions Commission (PPCC), the General Auditing Commission (GAC), the Internal Audit Agency (IAA) and the Debt Management Committee.
The WAIFEM Director General, Dr. Baba Y. Musa, in welcome remarks read on his behalf by the Institute’s Director of Research. Alvin Johnson, said the course was organized in response to the results of national debt management performance assessment missions and sub-national missions organized jointly by the World Bank and WAIFEM, which indicate low scores in audit of public debt in all WAIFEM countries. The course, Dr Musa said is also intended to provide auditors, accountants and debt managers with the knowledge of the key principles of public debt management and a wide range of public debt management issues, including key considerations in auditing public debt that enables auditors to perform effective auditing of public debt, and promote government financial accountability and transparency.
Participants in the week-long workshop were drawn from Anglophone West African countries including The Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone.-press release