IRBA Newsletter Issue 52

Issue 52 | October-December 2020 2 CEO’S PERSPECTIVE “It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.” - Muhammad Ali The “Year of Plenty” (and it has indeed been plentiful), as 2020 was popularly labelled when it began, is now drawing to a close. Notwithstanding all the challenges that these past 12 months have presented, reflections reveal that as an organisation we have made steady progress. The ramifications of COVID-19 will no doubt continue to alter the risk landscape, and the year ahead is sure to be challenging in that regard. Many organisations will battle with long-term viability, business continuity, operational resilience, supply chain impacts and talent disruption – and dealing with all that certainly calls for astute leadership that has proper plans and foresight. Against this backdrop of change and uncertainties, we embarked on a strategy refresh to align our plans to the new realities and expectations, as necessitated by the impact of COVID-19 and the leadership change at the IRBA. The realignment has entailed a review of our processes, people, platforms and our stakeholder engagement model to ensure that we continue serving and protecting the South African public and investors through focusing on the priorities highlighted in the graphic is in the middle. From the above, I will reflect on certain areas that are gaining momentum. At the beginning of the year, the IRBA embarked on a journey to reposition and recreate the appeal of the registered auditor (RA) A REFLECTION ON SOME PROGRESS DESPITE ALL THE CHALLENGES OF 2020 brand. I am really excited about the future of this project and the impact it will have on the profession and the pipeline of future RAs. Refer to page 17 for more information on this project. We have also made significant progress with the Auditing Profession Amendment Bill and are edging closer to completing this process. During this quarter, Parliament hosted two sessions: one on public consultations on the Bill; and the second for National Treasury and the IRBA to respond to the issues raised during the public consultations. The Bill was introduced and debated in the National Assembly on 2 December 2020 and will then be submitted to the National Council of Provinces for concurrence. The role that the IRBA plays in protecting the financial interests of the public cannot be over- emphasised. As such, that is why I started my journey with the IRBA by engaging with internal and external stakeholders to discern how we can work together to rebuild this profession and respond to the expectations of the public that we serve and protect. The affirmations from these conversations have enabled us to reconstruct the IRBA’s strategy and, more importantly, to recreate projects that will truly enable the elevation of the confidence needed in the audit profession. Listening to the outcomes of these conversations has led to some great initiatives that are underway at the IRBA, as depicted in the graphic below.