ICAN, CIFIAN bicker over forensic auditors bill

ICAN President, Ismaila Zakari,


The Chartered Institute of Forensic and Investigative Auditors of Nigeria (CIFIAN) yesterday faulted President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), Ismaila Zakari’s move to prevent President Muhammadu Buhari from signing the CIFIAN bill.

Describing the move as mischievous, CIFIAN’s President, Victoria Enape, urged President Buhari to ignore Zakari, pointing out that the clamour was due to ICAN’s ignorance about the difference between the accounting profession and an anti-fraud organisation.During a recent visit to Buhari, ICAN President urged him not to sign the CIFIAN bill recently passed by the National Assembly, arguing that it was a duplication of ICAN’s mandate

But Enape explained that the roles of both institutes differ, saying that CIFIAN emphasis is on forensic and investigative audit as against accounting and that it emerged in Nigeria to fill a vacuum and salvage the country from collapse.According to Enape, ICAN’s mandate is to regulate members of the accountancy profession and not forensic audit.

She stressed that CIFIAN is an anti-fraud organisation that provides skills to professionals of different fields in the use of science to prevent frauds and put in place sophisticated mechanisms to block loopholes of illicit financial flows.“Where has ICAN been with all the corruption, bribery, fraud, money laundering and financial crimes, which have for long ravaged our economy and dwarfed Nigeria’s development? She asked.

“It has been proven that the collapse and failure of most companies was aided and abetted by invidious and insidious accounting practices by the so-called accountants,” she added.

Enape argued that ICAN has no moral right to talk about duplication of accounting profession, adding: “ICAN’s attitude of fighting every professional body must stop.

“After all, the sky is too wide for all birds to fly without clashing. ICAN should desist from this unbecoming behaviour that have done much damage to the Nigerian economy.”Enape said the absence of an appropriate legal framework for the regulation of forensic and investigative auditing practice in Nigeria portends great danger for the integrity and safety of the Nigerian financial system.

“The first noticeable consequence of such a lacuna is that Nigeria currently spends hundreds of millions of scarce foreign exchange to hire forensic experts to investigate corporate frauds in the country,” she said.

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CIFIANICANIsmaila Zakari
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