Audit As A Tool For Fraud Control In The Public Sector: A Study Of Some Metropolitan Assemblies In Ghana

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Osei-Buabeng Hildah
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The purpose of this study was to evaluate audit as a tool for fraud prevention in the public sector taking Kumasi and Sunyani Metropolitan Assemblies (KMA/SMA) as a case study. The objectives of the study were: to identify the causes of fraud in the Metropolis, to identify the role auditors play in the detection and prevention of fraud in the Metropolitan Assemblies and to identify the challenges faced by auditors in prevention of fraud at (KMA/SMA). In this research work, survey design was used, which relate to collecting data from the population for intensive study and analysis. The research design adopted in this research is survey design method which comprises the use of oral interview and questionnaires. The total population of the study is over 200 institutions. In carrying out this research study, population was drawn from public institutions but mostly, in the Kumasi Metropolis. The target population for this study comprised all staff of both Kumasi and Sunyani Metropolitan Assemblies. The questionnaires were used to solicit views from workers at the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly. The structured questionnaires were used to collect data from all the respondents. The sample for the study was 50. The retrieved questionnaires were critically read through to check for consistency in responses. The questionnaires were then coded so that similar responses were coded as one to aid easy analysis. Responses from respondents interviewed were also coded to aid the analysis. Statistical tools such as frequency table and percentages were used to present the data. Tables and figures were used to present the responses. However, some responses were only discussed without tables. The percentages addressed the relative frequencies of the data, and the table and figures were used to show diagrammatic representation of the responses. The study revealed that fraud is prevalent at all levels of the organizational management, the study also revealed that weak internal control systems at KMA/SMA was the chief among the possible causes of fraud in the institution and finally, it was found that auditors do not get access to all necessary documents to make them perform their duties effectively in those Public Sectors. The study recommended that the management of KMA should take prudent measures to improve upon the internal control systems of KMA to help control fraud at all levels of management.