At a ceremony held on 21 June in Juba, the National Audit Chamber of South Sudan launched its five-year Strategic Plan, 2019–2024. The plan is truly result-oriented with clear plans on how the SAI will contribute to better public financial management through relevant and high-quality audits. This includes expanding the audit coverage of both Central Government as well as parastatals, the states and local government.
The Auditor General of South Sudan, Mr. Steven Wöndu, highlighted the concerted effort made in the development and design of the strategic plan. He called for the participation and support of all stakeholders for its successful implementation. “Oversight is not a one-man exercise. It is not like the Usain Bolt 100 meters run. This is like a long-relay run. The first runner is the National Audit Chamber who conducts audits and produce the report. Then the second runner is the legislature who deliberates and issues recommendations for follow-up. Then the third runner is the Executive, who improves its systems and performance based on the recommendations. It is a collective effort.”
Distinguished guests included the Chairperson of the Public Accounts Committee Mr. Martin Kot, Ambassador of Norway Mr. Lars Andersen, Head of Cooperation of the Japanese embassy, World Bank Senior Financial Management Specialist Mr. Stephen D. Amayo, the SPLM Information Secretary Mr. Peter Lam, and Head of International Cooperation in the Office of the Auditor General of Kenya, Mr. Anthony Waiganjo.
They were briefed on the main capacity priorities and results NAC is aiming for in the five-year period. Mr. Wöndu emphasised the importance of ringfencing the independence of the NAC and implementation of the terms of the Revitalized Peace Agreement including a revised audit act. This was also addressed in the speech of the Chairperson of the PAC. “For the peace agreement – how to strengthen the independency of the National Audit Chamber is key. The Audit Chamber is one of the key tools which shall work closely with the Parliament”.
The Auditor General also thanked the partners for their dedicated work and support. The Strategic Plan was developed by NAC staff with the advice of peers from AFROSAI-E and the IDI. Funding was provided by the Norwegian government. The Norwegian ambassador Mr. Lars Andersen highlighted the priority of his government to support Public Financial Management in South Sudan. “We are pleased to have supported the NAC and will continue supporting NAC.”