On 19-20 July in New York, Mr Kimi Makwetu, Chair of the INTOSAI Capacity Building Committee, participated in a meeting on “SAI Contributions to the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals” . The meeting was jointly organised by the United Nations Department of Social and Economic Affairs (UNDESA) and the INTOSAI Development Initiative (IDI).

The CBC Chair shared his perspectives under the topic “Strengthening SAI capacities for auditing SDG” – the following are just a few of his key messages:

o   SAIs will need to make a strategic shift in order to respond effectively to the need to strengthen their capacities in this era of SDG implementation. But, without the necessary SAI capacity, Agenda 2030 will become a missed opportunity for SAIs.

o   The emergence of Agenda 2030 is a great opportunity for SAIs to further demonstrate and increase the value they have to offer to our stakeholders as competent and independent assurance providers.

o   The quality of our auditing of SDG implementation will – as always – depend on the competencies of our staff and therefore the need to prioritise the knowledge, skills and attitude of our professionals on whom we will rely for the next 12 years.

o   When auditing SDG implementation SAIs need to have the capacity to deal with the whole value chain – from the point where the thoughts and plans of our governments originate, via their efforts at integrated policy development and execution, through to their measurement and reporting.

o   Any successful SAI strategy must ensure that the SAI embraces a culture of continual improvement and invests the time and resources needed to develop the capacity it requires, professionally and organisationally.

o   Some of the common competencies that will required include: critical thinking, perspective-taking and social intelligence, as well as research knowledge & skills., and an attitude of openness and collaboration.

o   An essential capacity for any SAIs is its capacity to demonstrate accountability and to lead by example seeing that our credibility as SDG auditors will depend on the quality of our own accountability and capacity to function as model institutions (e.g. as guided by ISSAI 12) .

o   Since the adoption of ISSAI 12 in 2013 the INTOSAI community has made great strides in leading by example as model institutions as far as their own governance and accountability arrangements are concerned.

Please find Kimi Makwetu’s presentation here: Kimi Makwetu presentation – Session VII Strengthening SAI capacities

The full report from the meeting can be found at  http://workspace.unpan.org/sites/Internet/Documents/UNPAN98666.pdf.