AUDITORS' INDEPENDENCE AND CORRUPTION ALLEVIATION IN THE NIGERIAN PUBLIC SERVICE

Ene E. Emeka, Ene C. Josephine

Abstract


Corruption is the greatest enemy of the Nigerian state evidenced by the recent rating of the nation as most corrupt country in the world. The debilitating effect of corruption pervades the Nigerian public service which is the machinery of government for the delivery of public goods and social services to the populace. This situation seemingly continues unabated under the watchful eyes of external auditors saddled with the responsibility of reviewing the operations of public service agencies. In evaluating the culpability of external auditors, this study investigates the external auditors’ independence as a factor in combating corruption in Nigeria public service. Survey method was adopted to assess the four factors identified by the study that affect the independence posture of external auditors. The responses from the questionnaire were analyzed using the SPSS test of statistics. The result reveals that the independence status of external auditors in Nigeria is compromised in the four areas investigated: appointment, professional fees, arms-length and tenure. The study therefore recommended that external auditors should be appointed by the Nigerian supreme audit institution and their fees should be determined by the same institution to which they should also render the audit report and management letter directly. 


Keywords


External Audit; Corruption; Public Service; Independence; Factors

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