Promoters of the Chartered Institute of Forensic and Investigative Auditors (CIFIA) have expressed dismay over ceaseless propaganda and display of ignorance by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) on the roles and essence of CIFIA.
The promoters reacted to what they termed mischief and misinformation being propagated by ICAN against CIFIA on the heels of the passage of the CIFIA Bill by the Senate awaiting concurrence by the House of Representatives.
ICAN had in a recent briefing with newsmen alleged among other things that CIFIA was a family business and amounted to proliferation of bodies.
In a rejoinder by the promoters led by Dr Victoria Enape, the forensic auditors expressed dismay that ICAN was disparaging the Senate by its campaign of calumny and hostility on a Bill meritoriously passed by the upper chamber.
“Having gone through the mischievous and malicious publications of ICAN, we found out their ignorance in all ramifications.
“ICAN was referring to the CIFIA, but in the real sense, ICAN was confusing themselves by describing something else and not the CIFIA Bill that was passed by the senate. This is because ICAN’s allegation lack merit as it is not in line with the contents of the CIFIA Bill at all.
“ICAN said they have public interest mandate to discourage and resist dilution of professional standards and quality. Therefore CIFIA Bill that was already passed by the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria should be discarded to safeguard the integrity of their noble profession. WOW!, what a wonderful quotation?.
“It is unfortunate that ICAN does not even know its boundary as a non- government agency. ICAN has conferred on itself power to direct the distinguished Senate and the House of Representatives of the federal Republic of Nigeria on how to discharge their constitutional duties.
“ICAN that have failed in its duty towards our country Nigeria all these years, is now talking of integrity. ICAN have enjoyed monopoly over the years until it became difficult for them to regulate the conduct their members like it is done in other professions, like Nigeria Bar Association and others.’’
On the allegation that the CIFIA Bill is a family business, the promoters said that ICAN’s allegation was spurious as there was no provision of the CIFIA Bill that made anybody a member of the council based on blood ties, or life members of the Governing Council.
They said that Clause 4 of the CIFIA Bill passed by the Senate provided for the election, qualification and tenure of the President, Vice President, and other officials of the CIFIA, and nowhere was it provided that the above offices were hereditary or based on blood ties to any family.
On ICAN’s allegation that the functions and responsibilities in CIFIA Bill is contained in their Act of 1965, the promoters said that there was nothing like forensic auditing or accounting in the whole world as of 1965 when ICAN law was enacted.
“ If ICAN members have been practicing Forensic Accounting and Auditing according to them, one may be compelled to ask them the basis of that since it is not contained in their enabling ACT of 1965.
“ Besides, why has Nigerian government heavily depends of expatriates Forensic Auditors over the years? Therefore, ICAN’s claim is baseless and untrue and therefore be disregarded by the general public.
“ I think ICAN need to find out more to know the different between Accounting profession and Forensic and Investigative Audit, the current trend in the whole world.’’
Reacting to allegation ICAN’s allegation that one of the promoters of the Bill is a staff of Accountant General of the Federation, a Federal worker who is still in service, but is also doubling as President, CIFIA said that was also no provision of the Public Service Rules or the Companies and Allied Matters Act that prohibit our participation in professional associations either as trustees or principal promoters.
The promoters said that they were pained because ICAN was politicising the professional body by engaging in indiscriminate propaganda instead of joining hands with CIFIA to sanitise Nigerian economy.