Newly appointed Auditor General Phil Sharman reported to work on Monday (August 14), vowing to serve the people and the House of Assembly, and to to ensure there is proper accountability and good governance in the British Virgin Islands (BVI).
Sharman, who is a former Chief Auditor of the Turks and Caicos Islands, said his priorities are two-fold.
The first is to get the public finance reporting up to date, while the second is to build the capability of the Audit Office while it assists the Public Accounts Committee to ensure it works effectively.
The new Auditor General further stated that he will be able to serve the people of the BVI effectively, noting that he previously held similar positions.
But he noted that the task ahead will be challenging, considering the arrears in financial reporting, and the need to get audits up to date.
Sharman said his stint got off to a ‘very good start’.
His duties commenced on Monday with courtesy visits to officials including Acting Governor Rosalie Adams, Premier and Minister of Finance Dr D Orlando Smith, as well as Leader of the Opposition and Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee Andrew Fahie.
Sharman fills the post of Auditor General, which was vacant since the retirement of Sonia Webster in September 2015.
“The vacancy was followed by comprehensive recruitment rounds on three separate occasions to identify the best suited candidate,” said the Government Information Service in a media release this afternoon, August 16.
It added that Sharman holds in-depth knowledge of United Kingdom Overseas Territories, having served as Chief Auditor in both St Helena and the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Sharman came to the BVI directly after serving as the statutory Chief Auditor for St Helena, and was responsible for promoting public accountability, and advising the Public Accounts Committee. He also provided assurance to stakeholders on the use of taxpayer funds through the audit of the financial statements of Government and other public bodies in that territory.
He has extensive experience as a statutory external auditor, having previously held director level roles with the Audit Commission and Audit New Zealand. There, Sharman had reporting responsibilities across all major sectors including central government and state-owned enterprises, local government, health, and education.
Sharman is a Chartered Public Finance Accountant with professional membership in both the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, and the Chartered Accountants of Australia and New Zealand.
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