1. INTRODUCTION

The Internal Audit Unit is one of the Units under the office of the Executive Secretary and has an administrative reporting line directly to him.

Internal Auditing is an independent appraisal activity for the review of the accounting, financial and other operations of an organization as a service to Management.  The unit helps to provide managerial control and is designed to add value to and improve the quality of the organization’s entire operations.

The Financial Regulations (FR) describes the Internal Audit function as a managerial control which functions by measuring the effectiveness of Internal Control system in an organization. The Unit is expected to provide a complete and continuous audit of the accounts and records of revenue and expenditure, assets, allocated and unallocated stores.

The Internal Audit Guidelines issued by the Federal Ministry of Finance in 2011 summarized the Internal Auditor’s duties as follows:

 

  • Checking compliance with laws, instructions and directives

  • Checking economy, efficiency and effective use of resources

  • Checking the adequacy of financial and accounting systems

  • Checking the level of achievement of set objectives

  • Checking the total operations of government for economy, efficiency and effectiveness.

    The economy, efficiency and effectiveness (popularly referred to as the 3 E’s) of the operations can be described concisely as follows:

 

Definition

Objective

 

Economy

Minimize inputs

Spend less

 

Efficiency

Achieve maximum output of goods and services for a given input

 

Spend Well

 

Effectiveness

Ensure that Policy achieves its goals and objectiveness

Spend Wisely

 

 

 

  1. Functions of the Audit Unit

  • Pre- payment audit of all payment vouchers to ensure that the payments are authorized and approved, the recording is accurate and is properly supported by third party documentation.

  • Preparation of quarterly and annual Audit Reports on financial activities of the Fund.

  • Advising management on control factors relating to all administrative and accounting procedures.

  • Planning and organizing Audit Verification of beneficiary dedicated TETFund accounts nationwide

  • Planning and organizing special verification of sundry intervention projects by the Fund

  • Carrying out audit verification of all procurements and items received into  Store and taking part in physical stock taking activities

  • Reviewing the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of operations

  • Applying civil Service Rules, Financial Regulations, Circulars and Generally Accepted Auditing Standards in treating specific financial/auditable subjects assigned.

  • Any other duties assigned by the Management of the Fund.

     

  1. SUB DIVISIONS & STAFFING

In order to carry out the above functions effectively, the Unit is subdivided into the three main sections.

  1. General Payments.

    The staff in this section carry out audit checking of payments vouchers for the overhead of the Fund, for Purchases, General Contracts and Utilities. Payments are checked for proper authorization, adequate documentation and compliance with government rules and regulations. This section also handles Staff Salaries andvouchers relating to allowances and other staff entitlements, checking of items received into Store and procurement activities

  2. Beneficiary Accounts.

    This section handles the payment vouchers for the various disbursements for Projects and Academic Staff Training and Development.  Beneficiariesalso submit Financial Returns to the Audit Unit on disbursements earlier released to them. These are scrutinized to ensure that the monies are spent in accordance with the Fund’s guidelines and government regulations.  Where the Returns are found to be adequate and satisfactory, the Unit issues an Audit Clearance Certificate to the Monitoring andEvaluation Department for the Beneficiary to access additional funds.

  3. Secretariat

The secretariat of the Unit maintains all Audit files for the various activities of the Fund. The staff here also maintain incoming and outgoing registers for Payment Vouchers as well as other correspondences with the Unit.

  1. MAJOR ACTIVITIES

    4.1     Prepayment Audit

    In line with its statutory functions as enumerated at 3.0 above, the Unit carries out daily checks on all Payment Vouchers raised by the Finance Department and where found satisfactory the vouchers are stamped and passed to the E-payment office for payment.

    4.2     Issuance of Audit Clearance

    The Unit receives Financial Returns from the Fund’s beneficiaries containing details of expenditure from all disbursements made to them. The Unit checks these submissions and where they are found to be satisfactory retirement of earlier disbursements, issues Audit Clearance in respect of the institutions before they are eligible to receive further disbursements from the Fund. 

    4.3     Periodic Audit Reports

    The Unit prepares Monthly, Quarterly and Annual Audit reports on the Funds activities. This consists of a summary of all payment vouchers passed under various headings during the month or quarter. It also gives an overview of the projects and activities funded by the Fund over a period of time whilst advising management on control measures and drawing attention to areas of concern.  Audit Reports are also made to the Board of Trustees through the Audit Committee of the Board.

    The Reports serve a medium of making recommendations for stronger Internal Controls and more effective implementation of the Fund’s mandate.

    4.4     Audit Inspection of Special Intervention Projects

    The Fund has a number of Special Intervention Projects aimed at the general development of the education sector such as Special Science Engineering and Technology (SET) Project nationwide, The Electronic Teaching and Learning Platform (Presidential Project) for Teaching and learning to 79 Public Universities. These and other specialized interventions such as the Book Development and Research Fund are closely monitored by the Audit Unit.

    The Internal Audit Unit carries out inspection visits, sometimes jointly with other departments of the Fund as the case may be depending on the nature of the project. The objective of the inspection visits is to conduct an Audit verification/Value for money Audit and produce Reports to Management for effective administration of the various projects

     

     

    4.5     Audit Verification of Beneficiary Accounts

     

    Three times a year, the Unit carries out an Audit Verification of the Accounts of Beneficiaries in the states. This is done with the help of Financial Consultants.

    Six states, one from each geopolitical zone, are covered in each exercise making a total of 18 states each year.  This way the 36 states are covered in two years and each beneficiary is visited once in two years.

    The aim of the exercise is to ensure that proper and adequate records of TETFund funds are maintained in respect of the Fund’s disbursements to the beneficiaries, and that the books are kept up to date.

     

    This Audit  Verification have gone a long way in establishing the fact that the Fund takes the issue of accountability and transparency in the usage of TETFund funds seriously and  has helped  in  improving record keeping and  ensuring better accountability by the beneficiaries.

     

    Thank You.

     

     

    Hameed Abdullahi