Framework to improve government auditing with particular reference to the performance of the State Audit Institution (SAI) in the United Arab Emirates
The increased role of governments in planning and controlling socio-economic development, results in huge government expenditures on programmes and activities. This increases the importance of the government budgeting and accounting system as a tool for planning, managing and controlling this huge increase in government activities. The external auditing and controlling authority ( State Audit Institution ) can strengthen the monitoring and controlling mechanism by performing not only a regularity and compliance audit, but by extending its role to include the examination, evaluation and audit of the economy, efficiency, effectiveness results of government programmes and activities.This study analyses the performance of the State Audit Institution in the U.A.E. in this regard, and identifies deficiencies. Suggestions for improvement, in terms of a more comprehensive, integrated performance approach, are made. As prerequisites to such expansion of the government auditing system, it will be necessary also to reform the government budgeting system. Adoption of the programme performance approach is recommended. Moreover, the need is identified for improvements to the accounting information system, to generate data and information which can respond efficiently and effectively to users' needs for information about programme operations. Internal and external obstacles which impede the effectiveness of the State Audit Institution must be addressed, to facilitate the introduction of an integrated approach to auditing the administrative sector in the United Arab Emirates, thereby safeguarding public resources and enhancing the effectiveness of socio-economic development efforts.