Disagreements between auditors and auditees may occur with respect to audit findings communicated to the auditee’s management during the audit. Such disagreements should preferably be resolved before the audit is finalised and the auditor’s report is signed.
All contested matters should be dealt with by the audit steering committee. Should a contested matter remain unresolved it should be escalated to the Business Executive responsible for the audit and in the case where it still remains unresolved it should be escalated to the relevant Corporate Executive.
If the disagreement relates to accounting standards and / or legislation, it is encouraged that the management of a provincial institution should refer the matter to the Provincial Accountant-General (PAG) and the management of a national institution should refer the matter to the appropriate unit of the Office of the Accountant-General (OAG) of the National Treasury. A disagreement resolution mechanism is established, whereby the AGSA, the OAG/ PAG and the management of the institution will work towards resolving these matters and consult with other parties as necessary.
The processes for the resolution of disagreements should preferably be exhausted before the AGSA’s formal complaints resolution mechanism, established as is required by section 13(1)(c) of the PAA, is considered. In turn this statutory mechanism should be observed before consideration is given to litigation to resolve a dispute on the audit.