Effect of value for money audit on public sector accountability: evidence from northern region, Ghana

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The study examines the effect of value for money auditing on public sector accountability in selected mmdas (Tamale Metropolitan Assembly, Sagnarigu Municipal, Gushegu District Assembly and Karaga District Assembly) in the Northern Region of Ghana. The study adopted a descriptive survey approach with a sample size of 83. Quantitative approached was adopted to analyse the data. The study revealed that value for money auditing induce the use of indicators that enhances accountability to users for quality of service, stimulus pressure from an informed domestic public opinion is needed for public sector reform. Cost should not be more than expected in value for money auditing in the region, cheaper inputs may risk the effectiveness and sustainability of value for money auditing. The study also revealed that respondents agreed that a program should not duplicate, overlap, or conflict other related programs, respondents agreed that it is not enough if an activity is very cheap and runs efficiently, but does not achieve results. Also respondents agreed that there should be adequate assessments of needs, clear objectives and adequate means of implementation, respondents agreed that information that is complete, accurate. The study further revealed that respondents agreed that goals and targets should be stated in writing and publicized, clearly specifying its effects, respondents agreed that poor project planning and management cause inadequate supervision and non compliance with terms and conditions of the contract in the selected mmdas in the Northern Region of Ghana. It thus recommended that to enhance economy value for money auditing and public accountability, regulation of the Public Finance Management Act regulations should be adhered to. It requires that expenditure of goods and services 3 should be controlled against spending and procurement plans approved by the responsible accounting officer. The accounting officer should not authorize payment to be made out of funds earmarked for specific activities for purposes other than those activities.
A thesis submitted to the department of accounting and finance college of humanities and social sciences in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of master of science in accounting and finance