THE NEED FOR PROFESSIONAL ACCOUNTANT IN MINISTRIES A CASE STUDY OF KOGI STATE MINISTRIES OF FINANCE

THE NEED FOR PROFESSIONAL ACCOUNTANT IN MINISTRIES A CASE STUDY OF KOGI STATE MINISTRIES OF FINANCE

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

          Accounting is needed as a language of business be it international or locally, and it is present both with the public sector and the private individual sectors. Accounting does not only involve in the recording of transaction alone but also spread the analysis and interpretation of the results, it is also use for record and planing, control and decision making. Accounting has gone through many phases over the years, simple double entry method of bookkeeping, and government, costing and management accounting it has also recently spread its winds toward social accounting.

          The public sector is made up of the government agencies, parastatals and various institutions owned by government. Public sector accounting could be defined as the process of recording, communicating, summarizing, analyzing and also interpreting government funds, financial statement in aggregate and in details. Reflecting all level of transaction involving the receipt, custody and disbursement of government funds financial operation in the public sector are generally not directed towards raising sufficient revenue to meet the cost of the service that the government unit are called upon to render.

          Thus making profit may not be incidental to the operations it is not their main objectives. The financial activities of any government unit are usually regulated and controlled and also directed by law and is armed at determining the raising and allocation of their revenue as well as the specific purpose for which the revenue may be spent.

          Standard and procedures for handling receipt and disbursement and reporting for the government must confirm with the law. For instance the government accounting is governed by the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended in 1989 and 1999, the finance (control and management) act of 1958 section 3 the act also stated that “the Minister of finance shall supervise expenditure and finance of the federation as to ensure its finance control is maintained” the purpose for this is to provide information about an economic entity whether private and pubic firms.

1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM

the oil born has really transformed Nigeria finance expanded its economic opportunity and created needs and one of those needs is for the government to maintain up to date accounts.

          I wish to state here without prejudice that the roles allocated to Nigeria government accountant have been too narrow and that there are lack of finishing managers and professional accountants both in numbers and quality in the public sector.

          over the years the activities of government have been greatly expanded hence the need for professional accountant that will act as visit for the strengthening of the economy by way of proper keeping of records. Trained accountant are in short supply in the public sector since the government have not been able to train and even the trained ones are not retrained because of poor remuneration. Even the deputy accountant general of the federation admitted that there absence of professional accountants in the public sector.

          There is the urgent need to interest heavily in manpower development. The belief that money spent on training is wasted and time consuming is gone, because there is obvious call for professionals to take over the accounting record keeping of various department in the public sector. 

1.3            PURPOSE OF STUDY

Problem face by the public sector as regards the accounting recording keeping has been enumerated in the statement of problem. The purpose is to truly identify these problems and provide suggestion on how these problems could be solved. The overall objective of this study is to determine the need for professional accountant in the public sector especially in the ministry through the identification and description of the staff in account department in the ministry of finance, using Kogi State Ministry of  finance as a case study. Determine the need for adequate training toward professionalism in the ministry, the reasons for the increase in labour turnover in the ministries and ways of reducing it.

Again the research will focus on accountability in the civil service and factor that militate against accountability in the public sector.

1.4            SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

Despite its problem, the result of this study will be beneficial to all state ministries, top government administration and the general public at large. A study of this will prepare a comprehensive list of the ministry of finance. This hopefully will be of help to accountant having the intention of taking up appointment in the pre-service and in – service training needs of the accountants and the financial administrator in the civil service.

1.5            CHOICE OF STUDY

This topic is turn out of the fact that accounting records are not kept in the public service and the desire to identify the roles expected of accountants in the ministries. The knowledge of accounting acquired as an accounting student has actually informed this topic.

1.6            RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

The research proposes the use of both primary and secondary approaches to carry out this project in order to obtain detected and comprehensive research. Personal approval or all interview will be conducted, carrying out of personal observation and make use of questionnaire needed will be directed to the following categories of people.

1.     Accountant in the ministry of finance

2.     Senior officer of the ministry

3.     Accountant

4.     Other personnel in the finance department of the same ministry, for secondary approach, the research intend to make use of some relevance books, journals, and official gazette and government publication.

1.7            SCOPES AND LIMITATION.

The research will be carried out within the Kogi State Ministry of finance. the research paper will be limited to the same ministry due to time constraint and cost involves.

1.8            WORKING HYPOTHESIS

1.     That there is inadequate and incapable accounting manpower such as professional accountants in the ministries.

2.     That if qualifies accountant are in the civil service it would enhance accountability and efficient management of public fund.

3.     That there is lack of manpower training in the civil service and where training exists, it is inadequate.

4.     That there is a problem of recruiting and retaining professional accountant in the ministry.

1.9            DATA ANALYSIS

Data collected from questionnaire would be coded and summarized in Master table. There would be presented in the report using appropriate frequencies distribution and contingency tables. 

TYPES OF DATA USED

Primary data collection

Secondary data collection.

PRIMARY DATA COLLECTION

Methods of collecting data directly from the organization of case study e.g. Kogi State Ministry of Finance (KMF) under this primary investigation, I was able to get all the necessary facts and figure from (KMF) before this project could be put together.

SECONDARY DATA COLLECTION

Methods of collecting data or fact from financial books, financial managemental tax.

METHOD OF DATA COLLECTION

A.   BEFACTO METHOD: this involves face to face interview between the interviewer and interview.

HISTORY OF THE CASE STUDY .

The Kogi State Ministry of Finance is a Department made of six main divisions.

1.     Administration

2.     Finance

3.     Treasury

4.     Internal revenue

5.     Internal audit

6.     Computer center

1.     The Administrative division headed by the principal secretary.

2.     The finance division is headed by the Accountant General

3.     The Treasury Division is headed by the Accountant General who is the Chief Accounting officer of the Ministry of the State Government.

4.     The Internal Revenue Division is headed by the Director of Internal Revenue.

5.     The internal Audit. 

6.     The Computer Center headed by a Principal Secretary of finance.

There two deputy Accountant General in the Finance Division one for the accounts and the other for Administration who assist the accountant General. Next is the Deputy Accountant and principal Executive officer (PEO). One is responsible for the main Accounts and the other is responsible for final accounts and the last for foreign exchange account. Below each of the three principal :

Exchange office (PEO) are other senior

Executive officer (SEO) and higher

Executive officer (HEO) and Assistant

Executive officer. A close study of the Ministry of financial organization structure will disclose their hierarchinal order.

          The account officer in the accountants in so far as they carry out statutory functions of the ministry by collecting revenue and preparing payment voucher.



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