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PASAI Newsletter, No. 18 - the 'Partnership' issue

In this 18th issue of PASAI’s newsletter, we focus on the partnerships that enable us to achieve our many ambitious goals - doing the right things, in the right way, with the right people.

We look at the inter-regional partnership with the introduction of the IntoSAINT tool in two Pacific SAIs, where PASAI members were trained by SAI Mexico to test integrity risks and recommend improvement in audit offices and ministries alike.

We feature the outreach activities of SAIs Nauru, Pohnpei and Kosrae, connecting with citizens to raise public awareness of the role of the SAI, and of fraud and corruption.

We highlight the network of relationships with IDI and all our SAIs to establish full measurement of SAI performance, through our comprehensive SPMR programme combined with the targeted assessment provided by the SAI PMF process.

We hear from the PACs who strive for fine-tuned understanding of Public Financial Management; the youth groups and other citizen communities who join with us to shape their own futures; the working groups bringing attention to specific audits and matters of global interest.

And of course we honour our strategic alliances with the SAIs, INTOSAI regions and development partners who work alongside us to enable us to deliver our strategic plan. PASAI has long enjoyed a strong connection with IDI, MFAT and DFAT in delivering our core support to SAIs. A significant development in 2019 has been the new donor partnership established between PASAI and the EU-UNDP through the ‘Strengthening of public Finance Management and Governance in the Pacific Project’.

You can read more about this in the newsletter, and we also give you a heads-up about the biggest ‘partnership’ event in the PASAI calendar - PASAI’s 22nd Congress, taking place in Natadola, Fiji from 13 - 16 August 2019. SAIs, Development Partners, the Governing Board, PASAI’s Secretariat and interested parties and observers will gather to share news and experiences and find out about PASAI’s approach to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Enjoy this latest issue - Download the newsletter here.

SAI Fiji gathers performance feedback through SAI PMF assessment

PRESS RELEASE

SAI Fiji gathers performance feedback through the SAI PMF assessment

Nadi, Fiji –  (19 July 2019)  A performance assessment of the Republic of Fiji’s Supreme Audit Institution (SAI) has been purposefully conducted to provide objective baseline information on the SAI’s performance, which is built around six core organisational areas.

This was the second SAI PMF assessment in the Pacific Association of Supreme Audit Institution (PASAI) region following the successful SAI Performance Measurement Framework (PMF) planning workshop that was also held in Fiji.

The workshop had prepared expert teams of assessors made up of a cohort of staff from the PASAI Secretariat, which includes consultants and auditors from SAIs around the region. SAI PMF is a multi-purpose, universal framework, and can be applied in all types of SAIs regardless of governance structure, mandate, national context and development level.

Fiji’s assessment was made possible through the Strengthening of Public Finance Management and Governance in the Pacific Project, funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). PASAI is a responsible party to the project and delivers the SAI component and contributes to the strengthening of the budget oversight capacities of PAC from the perspectives of SAIs).

The assessment team updated Fiji’s Auditor-General, Ajay Nand, with the progress of the assessment mid-way through the process and will present a summary of preliminary key findings to the AG as the assessment ends. The Office of the Auditor General emphasised how helpful this exercise has been in setting benchmarks for their work. 

“This assessment will be very useful for Fiji SAI to understand where we can improve and also highlight where the office is performing well,” said Nand.

“In particular, this will help me implement the audit mandate more effectively and make a difference to the lives of Fiji citizens and residents. We have also committed to submit the final report on the findings of assessment to Parliament for transparency.”

Sina and Kelepi interview HR team member.JPG

The review team, comprised of the PASAI Performance Audit Consultant Claire Kelly, PASAI Director of Practice Development, Sinaroseta Palamo-Iosefo and SAI Tonga Assistant Auditor General, Kelepi Makakaufaki, established the Terms of Reference with Fiji’s OAG to guide the assessment.

The assessment, which was carried out in July, included interviews with members of the Executive Management, a questionnaire on SAI management practices to all non-management staff members and a series of evidence-based enquiries and documentary reviews that span the two-week assessment process. 

As the manager of the SAI PMF initiative across the PASAI region, Sina Palamo-Iosefo said, “The SAI PMF assessments provide excellent baseline information for PASAI to determine appropriate interventions for our members.” She added, “It also enables us to monitor the progress of SAI performance over time and continue to identify and provide appropriate support to SAIs where needed. SAI Fiji’s commitment to the process and openness in sharing information with the assessment team in order to do this has been exemplary.”

PASAI extends its gratitude to the EU and UNDP for their support through the ‘Strengthening PFM’ project, and to development partners MFAT and DFAT for their ongoing support and contributions to PASAI’s core funding.

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More information:

Strengthening of Public Finance Management and Governance in the Pacific Project aims to strengthen oversight over public financial management in the Pacific region, through improving the budgetary scrutiny, public financial oversight and accountability capacities of parliaments, supreme audit institutions and civil society within the region, aligning with international public financial oversight and accountability standards, and fostering citizen engagement and oversight. The Strengthening of Public Finance Management and Governance in the Pacific Project is funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in partnership with the Pacific Association of Supreme Audit Institutions (PASAI).

Contact information:

1. Jill Marshall, Communications Advisor, PASAI (Auckland, NZ) E: jill.marshall@pasai.org, P:+64 9 304 1893

2. Jone Tuiipelehaki Raqauqau, Effective Governance – Communications Associate, UNDP Pacific Office in Fiji. E: jone.raqauqau@undp.org, P: 3227 552

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Sina Interviews Senior member - HR.JPG

SAI Vanuatu strengthens performance through SAI PMF assessment

PRESS RELEASE

SAI Vanuatu strengthens performance through SAI PMF assessment

Port Vila, Vanuatu (26 June 2019)

An assessment of the public financial management (PFM) system of Vanuatu’s Supreme Audit Institution (SAI) was conducted in early June to provide a true and clear baseline of performance built around six core organisational areas in which a SAI should operate.

Vanuatu OAG logo.jpg

The assessment in Vanuatu follows the successful SAI Performance Measurement Framework (PMF) planning workshop that was held in Fiji recently.

According to the INTOSAI Development Initiative, the SAI PMF provides SAIs with a framework for voluntary assessments of their performance against the International Standards for Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAIs) and other established international good practices for external public auditing. SAI PMF is a multi-purpose, universal framework, and can be applied in all types of SAIs regardless of governance structure, mandate, national context and development level.

Vanuatu’s assessment was made possible through the Strengthening of Public Finance Management and Governance in the Pacific Project, which aims to strengthen oversight over public financial management in the Pacific region through improving the budgetary scrutiny, public financial oversight and accountability capacities of parliaments, supreme audit institutions and civil society within the region, aligning with international public financial oversight and accountability standards, and fostering citizen engagement and oversight. The Project is funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in partnership with the Pacific Association of Supreme Audit Institutions (PASAI).

Under the umbrella of the Project and with additional core funding from PASAI development partners DFAT and MFAT, the Review team (comprised of the PASAI Director of Technical Support, A’eau Agnes Aruwafu, the SAI Fiji-QA Team Leader, Meresimani Katuba, the Senior Auditor for SAI Kiribati, Tokanikai Tiira, and SAI Kiribati Senior Auditor, Mr Ioteke Teweti) developed terms of reference with the Vanuatu OAG as the SAI PMF implementation began.

Following the two-week assessment, the Vanuatu Auditor General, Caleb Sandy, and the Office of the Auditor General underlined how helpful this exercise was in setting benchmarks for their work. 

“This assessment will be very useful for Vanuatu SAI to understand where we can improve and also highlight where the office is performing well,” said Sandy. “In particular, this will help me implement the audit mandate more effectively and make a difference to the lives of Vanuatu citizens and residents.”

PASAI Chief Executive Mr Tiofilusi Tiueti added, “The SAI PMF assessments are not only going to help strengthen our SAIs in the Region, but will also provide excellent baseline information for PASAI to determine appropriate interventions for our members.”

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Contact information:

1. Jill Marshall, Communications Advisor, PASAI (Auckland, NZ) E: jill.marshall@pasai.org, P:+64 9 304 1893

2. Jone Tuiipelehaki Raqauqau, Effective Governance – Communications Associate, UNDP Pacific Office in Fiji. E: jone.raqauqau@undp.org, P: 3227 552

 

 

SAI PMF Assessment Team with the SAI Vanuatu Auditor General and his staff

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                    

Assessment teams equipped to roll out the SAI PMF measurement tool across the PASAI region

PRESS RELEASE

Friday 10 May 2019

The SAI PMF Tool will strengthen governance in the Pacific

Nadi, Fiji: The Pacific Association of Supreme Audit Institutions (PASAI) in collaboration with the INTOSAI Development Initiative (IDI) facilitated a planning workshop on measuring the performance of public audit offices.

Fourteen participants from six government audit offices namely State Chuuk of the Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Pohnpei, Tonga and Vanuatu, including the facilitators and PASAI Secretariat, attended the workshop in Nadi, Fiji on 6-10 May 2019 at Novotel Nadi Hotel. The objective of the workshop is to build capabilities of public auditors in using a measurement tool, the International Organisation of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) SAI Performance Measurement Framework (SAI PMF) to enable them to peer review each other’s performance.

Use of the SAI PMF tool was piloted in the Pacific region and implemented in other INTOSAI regions. Measuring the performance of SAIs ensures that government audit offices have the capacity and resources to conduct quality audits that contribute to good governance and make a difference in the lives of citizens.

The SAI PMF assessment will provide a true and clear baseline of performance built around six core organisational areas. Without this baseline, SAIs find it difficult to measure improvement against key performance indicators. Several PASAI SAIs already have this baseline information as a result of Phase 1 of the SAI PMF roll-out, and the SAIs participating in this workshop will now experience its practical application, as an assessment of their Offices will be conducted during the year. Future SAI PMF assessments will then map performance change over a period of time to feed into the SAI’s strategic planning activities.

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Facilitated by Sinaroseta Palamo-Iosefo, PASAI’s Director Practice Development and Irina Sprenglewski, IDI’s SAI PMF Advisor, the workshop provided more than an overview of the importance of measuring and reporting on performance. Delegates were able to run through a number of realistic scenarios to strengthen their learning which will be useful when they conduct these assessments over the next few months.

Says Meresimani from the Fiji Auditor General’s Office, ‘It has been very illuminating to see how SAI PMF can be used to highlight areas of weakness and potential within each SAI. As it is an evidence-based tool, we learned first-hand how to use the tool by asking the right questions, obtaining proper evidence and finally by recording our responses in an effective and meaningful manner.’

The workshop has been the first activity funded under the new donor partnership established between PASAI and the EU under the Strengthening of public Finance Management and Governance in the Pacific Project. The Strengthening of Public Financial Management and Governance in the

Pacific Project aims to strengthen oversight over public financial management in the Pacific region, through improving the budgetary scrutiny, public financial oversight and accountability capacities of parliaments, supreme audit institutions and civil society within the region, aligning with international public financial oversight and accountability standards, and fostering citizen engagement and oversight. Strengthening of Public Financial Management and Governance in the Pacific Project is funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

PASAI and IDI were honoured to welcome UNDP representatives, Marine Destrez and Manjeet Singh, to the first day of the workshop. In her opening remarks, Ms Destrez explained that this workshop is part of a whole spectrum of activities included in a new pool of funding created by the European Union (EU) that is dedicated to strengthening public financial management (PFM). Funding programs such as these are essential to strong governance, she went on. Public financial management covers frameworks, institutions and tools and brings together diverse stakeholders at the different stages of the Public Finance cycle. Audit Institutions play an important role in the oversight of PFM plans, processes and results and are an essential part of the transparency and accountability landscape of PFM. Both PASAI and EU/UNDP anticipate great collaborations on these important issues.

SAI PMF 2 Planning Workshop official photo.jpg

PASAI also acknowledges the continuous support of the Australia Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT).

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For more information contact:

Mr. Tiofilusi Tiueti

Chief Executive PASAI Secretariat

Email: tiofilusi.tiueti@pasai.org

Telephone: +64 9 304 1275

Website: www.pasai.org

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Read the press release online

PASAI's SAI PMF Planning Workshop in Fiji (May 2019) will ultimately strengthen governance


MEDIA RELEASE

For issue 3 May 2019

 

STRONG GOVERNANCE NEEDS QUALITY AUDITS

 

The Pacific Association of Supreme Audit Institutions (PASAI) together with the INTOSAI Development Initiative (IDI) will be holding a planning workshop on measuring performance of public audit offices in Nadi, Fiji on 6-10 May 2019 at Novotel Nadi Hotel.

Governance is strengthened through quality audits performed by competent and capable auditors. Measuring auditors’ performance ensures that government audit offices are capable and well-resourced to conduct quality audits that contribute to good governance and make a difference in the lives of citizens.

SAI PMF_white background.jpg

The planning workshop will prepare government auditors from State Chuuk of the Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati and Vanuatu to assess the performance of government audit offices using the International Organisation of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) SAI Performance Measurement Framework (SAI PMF), a measurement tool adopted by the INTOSAI community.

Use of the SAI PMF tool was piloted in the Pacific region and implemented in other INTOSAI regions. It has proven to be very successful in identifying SAI strengths, weaknesses and development needs in a comprehensive range of organisational areas. As part of the ongoing roll-out and practical application of this program, an assessment of each participating Office will be conducted during the year.

Sinaroseta Palamo-Iosefo, PASAI’s Director - Practice Development, will lead the workshop along with IDI’s SAI PMF Advisor, Irina Sprenglewski. The director, who is also heavily involved in the refinement and application of the SAI PMF tool on a global SAI basis, states: ‘We are very fortunate in PASAI to have both the knowledge and experience of the SAI PMF process, and the funding provided by the European Union (EU) to bring this workshop directly to the region. The results so far have been very encouraging, and we now have a chance to embed and expand its usage to strengthen governance across the Pacific.’

EU representative Marga Peeters and UNDP representative Jean-Raphael Guiliani at PASAI’s Governing Board Meeting in Auckland, NZ, 28 Feb – 1 March 2019

EU representative Marga Peeters and UNDP representative Jean-Raphael Guiliani at PASAI’s Governing Board Meeting in Auckland, NZ, 28 Feb – 1 March 2019

The workshop is the first activity funded under the new donor partnership established between PASAI and the EU. It is supported by the United Nations Development Partner (UNDP), the Australia Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT).

 

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 For more information contact:

Mr. Tiofilusi Tiueti

Chief Executive PASAI Secretariat

Email: tiofilusi.tiueti@pasai.org

Telephone: +64 9 304 1275

The SAI PMF Assessment team for the Nauru SAI PMF assessment in 2018, with Sinaroseta Palamo-Iosefo far left and Irina Sprenglewski third from right.

The SAI PMF Assessment team for the Nauru SAI PMF assessment in 2018, with Sinaroseta Palamo-Iosefo far left and Irina Sprenglewski third from right.

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IDI’s Irina Sprenglewski interviews Naura SAI Head, Mr Manoharan Nair, during Nauru’s SAI PMF assessment (2018)