Head of the Internal Audit Unit Romilly Murrain said they have seen an interest in government departments seeking their assistance now that they have learned more about what they do.
Murrain was speaking at the Open House, which was the final event for the month-long International Awareness Month for Internal Audit, on Friday, May 31. She shared with the media and other invited guests that they are deeply appreciative of the opportunities provided during the month of May to educate their colleagues across the government and also the public about what they do in the Internal Audit Unit.
The unit is often confused with External Audit also known as the Office of the Auditor General within the Government of Montserrat. While, they both have the strategic function which is oversight of public finance, they accomplish this differently.
The Internal Audit profession has been established since 1941, however, because of the increased financial scandals over the last few years, greater attention has been brought to the function. It was introduced to Montserrat during the 2011/2012 financial year with an office established in April 2013. Murrain said the role requires courage because of the need to be frank and honest about waste, inefficiencies and other matters as seen across government operations.
The officers in the unit visited various departments, schools and conducted radio interviews to introduce the public to their work and they plan to continue this throughout the year.
Acting Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture Eulyn Silcott-Greaves said her department has benefited from the work of the Internal Audit Unit. She told the gathering that their importance should become part of the orientation programme for all new government employees, as it will help them to understand how good procedures and systems support efficient and effective service to clients.
Accountant General Courtney Crump said the work of the unit is critical to enabling them to complete their tasks to produce the financial statements for the Government of Montserrat. It has also assisted them with implementing better systems, he added.
Murrain commended her staff for their work, which she said has been exemplary and with the added pressure of others believing they are only looking for the negative. She said that their goal is for clients and stakeholders to have a greater understanding of the role to foster improved collaboration and become their trusted advisor.
During Friday’s brief ceremony, Jovita White, an Internal Auditor received the 2018/19 Employee of the Year Award.