Primrose Lerato Mbhiza
The South African Auditor-General Tsakani Maluleke has welcomed the news that her team has been elected as the external auditor of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) for a five-year term starting from 2024 to 2029.
After a rigorous bidding process, UNESCO announced South Africa’s supreme audit institution (SAI) as its new auditors.
In welcoming the news, Maluleke says: “As the national audit office, we are delighted at this international endorsement of our capabilities and the quality of our auditing. This is good news for our country and demonstrates that we are a global force to be reckoned with. It also recognises the hard work of the more than 3 700 AGSA employees. We dedicate this celebration to all the citizens of our country”.
UNESCO is a specialised agency of the United Nations (UN) that aims to promote world peace and security through international cooperation in education, arts, science and culture. It has over 190 member states and 12 associate members, as well as partners in the non-governmental, intergovernmental and private sectors.
Over the years, the AGSA has built an international reputation as a SA’s with solid auditing and governance systems. In 2021, the World Bank ranked the audit office as one of two national audit offices in the world (the other being Seychelles) that have complete independence to carry out their audit mandates in their respective countries.
“I extend words of appreciation and special thanks to our government, especially the departments of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) and Basic Education
(DBE) for showing confidence in the national audit office’s capabilities and supporting us through the process,” says Maluleke.
As UNESCO’s external auditors, the AGSA’s responsibilities will include issuing a report on the financial statements and relevant schedules of the UN agency, its institutes and related functions.
Maluleke says her team is ready to take on this new assignment, “and we will diligently carry our country’s flag in promoting the auditing profession”.
She adds that UNESCO will obtain “maximum benefit from our integrated approach that combines financial audit with compliance and performance of the institution”.
#TeamAGSA will provide insights into critical education aspects that contribute to improving the quality of teaching and learning skills development. It will assess how effectively, efficiently and economically UNESCO donor funding is used; deliver improved root cause analysis of the detailed findings; and offer better, more impactful recommendations that will lead to more effective corrective actions”.