Executive Council met on Tuesday, 16 April 2019, with three items on the Open Agenda.

The first two items – the Investment Strategy April 2019 and the Rules of Procedure of the Executive Council and the Duties of Members and the Clerk of Councils – were deferred to later meetings allowing for additional information to be provided.

The SHG financial statements for 2017/18 were then presented by the Financial Secretary, these were the seventh set of financial statements prepared in accordance with International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS).  The accounts continue to show an improvement year on year with three qualifications from the 2016/17 financial statements being cleared in 2017/18 and with two legacy qualifications remaining.  In 2017/18 two new qualifications have been given by the Chief Auditor on the fair presentation of the statements.

The Chief Auditor presented his Audit Management Letter, outlining the challenges encountered during the audit and the areas that have resulted in a qualification.  The Chief Auditor also outlined his recommendations arising from the audit and Executive Council noted the responses given by the Financial Secretary as to how these recommendations will be addressed.

After much deliberation, Members supported the Financial Secretary’s recommendation to approve the financial statements and thanked both the Corporate Finance and St Helena Audit Service teams for their hard work in bringing the audit process to a conclusion.

Members were keen to point out the importance of having audited financial statements for greater accountability and transparency on public spending.  Good Governance is essential in a modern democratic society. The financial statements and the Chief Auditor’s Management Letter will be laid upon the table at the next formal Legislative Council meeting and thereafter be scrutinised by the Public Accounts Committee.

The meeting concluded at around 12.45pm.

Notes to Editors

The SHG Financial Statements for 2017/18 are now available on the Finance page of the SHG website: http://www.sainthelena.gov.sh/finance/

A photo of the Financial Secretary and Chief Auditor signing the Financial Statements is attached to this report.

ExCo

18 April 2019

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