Cover Story


International Journal of Government Auditing – January 2011

Editor’s note: This issue is dedicated to the XX International Congress of Supreme Audit Institutions (INCOSAI), which was hosted by Terence Nombembe and the Office of the Auditor-General of South Africa in Johannesburg, November 22–27, 2010.

XX INCOSAI at a Glance

Terence Nombembe, Auditor-General of
South Africa and host of the XX INCOSAI,
welcomed delegates to South Africa. At the opening ceremony, Maite Nkoana-
Mashabane, South Africa’s Minister of
International Relations and Cooperation,
welcomed delegates to the congress on
behalf of the President of South Africa.
Terence Nombembe, Auditor-General of South Africa and host of the XX INCOSAI, welcomed delegates to South Africa. At the opening ceremony, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, welcomed delegates to the congress on behalf of the President of South Africa.
  • The XX INCOSAI was well-attended with over 500 delegates representing 152 supreme audit institutions (SAI), including 104 heads of SAIs, and 54 observers.

  • The Secretary General reported on the implementation of the INTOSAI Strategic Plan 2005–2010 and presented the Strategic Plan 2011–2016, which was approved by the congress. INTOSAI identified the following strategic priorities for the coming years: helping to ensure the independence of SAIs, implementing the International Standards for Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAI), strengthening SAI capacity building, communicating the value and benefits of SAIs, and fighting corruption.

  • The Johannesburg Accords were adopted. The accords cover the discussions, conclusions, and recommendations from theme I (the value and benefits of SAIs) and theme II (environmental auditing and sustainable development).

  • Progress was made on the Donor Funding Initiative, a key international effort to enhance the capabilities of SAIs in developing countries. In a meeting held days before the start of the congress, the INTOSAI-Donor Steering Committee made short- and long-term working plans to further implement its mandate.

  • The congress voted to continue the position of Director of Strategic Planning, and Monika Gonzalez from the General Secretariat succeeded Kirsten Astrup in that role.

  • The congress endorsed the 35 International Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAI) and 2 INTOSAI Guidance on Good Governance (INTOSAI GOV) presented by the Professional Standards Committee.

  • The following changes were made to Goal 3 working groups and task forces:
    • A Task Force on SAIs Information Database was established to compile information about the INTOSAI community into one database for use by all members. The Task Force will be chaired by Mexico.

    • The congress approved the INTOSAI Communication Guideline, prepared by the INTOSAI Communication Strategy Task Force. The task force was also dissolved.

    • The congress approved the dissolution of the Working Group on Privatization, Economic Regulations, and Public-Private Partnerships.
  • The Jorg Kandutsch Award, which is given to members for exceptional implementation of INTOSAI goals within their regional working groups, was presented to the SAI of South Africa.

  • The Elmer B. Staats Award, which is awarded for the best article—as judged by this Journal’s Board of Editors—since the last INCOSAI, went to Egbert Jongsma and Frederique de Graaf from the Netherlands Court of Audit for their article “Using Geographic Information Systems to Audit Efforts to Combat Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing,” published in the July 2008 Journal.

  • The XXI INCOSAI will be hosted by the Auditor General of China in Beijing in 2013.

xx Incosai South Aftrica congress logo Congress Logo

The baobab tree was the inspiration for the XX INCOSAI logo. Known in many parts of Africa as “the tree of life,” the baobab has always been the traditional meeting place for far-off tribes and villagers to come together and share their knowledge. It can be found in several African countries and is a nationally protected tree of great cultural significance.

One of the themes of the XX INCOSAI was Environmental Auditing and Sustainable Development, and the tree embodies the theme of “going green,” as every part of the tree can be used to sustain life: from the bark to the roots, the tree provides sustenance and shelter to the people of Africa. The branches of the tree in the logo were transformed into intertwining human hands that signify care of the environment. They reach into the sky, showing infinite possibilities relating to the growth of the world’s economic and financial future. This optimistic view links to the other main theme of the congress: the value and benefits of SAIs.

The diamonds within the baobab tree refer to the rich natural resources of South Africa and the African continent and also represent the five official languages of INTOSAI.

 

The Elmer B. Staats Award for best During the congress, Josef Moser (right),
The Elmer B. Staats Award for best article as judged by the Journal’s Board of Editors went to two auditors from the Netherlands SAI. During the congress, Josef Moser (right), INTOSAI General Secretary, presented the Jörg Kandutsch Award to Terence Nombembe (left), Auditor-General of South Africa, in recognition of the South African SAI’s contributions to INTOSAI. Dr. Moser also recognized Juan M. Portal (center), Auditor General of Mexico, for his service as outgoing chair of the INTOSAI Governing Board.
Before the opening ceremony of the congress, delegates and observers gathered for the
official congress photo in the Sandton International Convention Center in Johannesburg.

Before the opening ceremony of the congress, delegates and observers gathered for the official congress photo in the Sandton International Convention Center in Johannesburg.