The newly elected president of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), Mrs Comfort Olujumoke Eyitayo has decried the continuous disregards for professionals in the civil service recruitment process.
Eyitayo made the observation while delivering her acceptance speech during her investiture as the 57th president of ICAN in Lagos on Tuesday.
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She said: “These are not the best times for the accountancy profession as accountants in the profession are being challenged, not only by the harsh economic circumstances of the nation, but also, by pieces of regulations designed to diminish the importance of professionalism in public governance.
“As you are aware, the office of the Head of Service of the Federation on April 12, 2021, issued a circular to all Ministries, Departments and Agencies stopping the use of professional qualifications as entry qualifications into the Civil/Public Service of the Federation with immediate effect.
“The circular affirmed that professional qualifications will only be an added advantage.”
She said to accept a post-primary qualification for entry into the Civil Service and disparage professional qualifications as not an acceptable qualification for the same purpose is to hold in contempt the Acts of Parliament, which set up the various professional bodies.
Eyitayo said: “I dare to say that professionalism, nay, the Accountancy profession is now an endangered profession. Under this scenario, the Council under my leadership cannot be fluent in silence.
“During this Presidential Year, therefore, the Council under my leadership will raise the banner of advocacy to stem this ugly tide for the benefit of all stakeholders of the Accountancy profession,” she said.
Eyitayo said she would engage and leverage the Council’s network of professionals, especially under the auspices of the Association of the Professional Bodies in Nigeria (APBN) to engage government with a view to revisiting the policy.
She further stated that the time for Accountancy nationalism as envisaged by the Nigerian Content and Related Acts of the Parliament, is now.
She explained that all accounting services in government projects and joint ventures partnerships should be carried out by Nigerian professional accountants.
“Besides helping to build capacity, boosting employment opportunities and saving foreign investment exchange, the legitimacy of such entities will be enhanced,“ She added.