Public Accountants and Auditors Act
- Commenced on 1 April 2014
- [This is the version of this document at 31 December 2014.]
- [Note: This version of the Act was revised and consolidated in the Fifth Revised Edition of the Laws of Malawi (L.R.O. 1/2018), by the Solicitor General and Secretary for Justice under the authority of the Revision of the Laws Act.]
Part I – Preliminary
1. Short titleThis Act may be cited as the Public Accountants and Auditors Act.
2. InterpretationIn this Act, unless the context otherwise requires—“audit” means an independent examination of financial statements by an auditor to enable him express an opinion on whether financial statements are prepared, in all material respects, in accordance with an identified financial reporting framework;“Board” means the Malawi Accountants Board established under section 3;“chartered accountant” means a person who is registered as a Chartered Accountant;“College” means the Malawi College of Accountancy established by the Education Act;[Cap. 30:01]“diplomate accountant” means a person who is registered as a Diplomate Accountant;“financial year” means the period of twelve months ending on 30th June of each year;“Institute” means the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Malawi incorporated under the Companies Act;[Cap. 46:03]“Member” means a member of the Board;“practising certificate” means a certificate issued by the Institute permitting the holder to carry on practice as a chartered accountant in public practice;“public practice” means the practice of a person who performs the functions of an accountant or auditor, and for that purpose, holds himself out as an accountant or auditor and places his services at the disposal of the public for reward, but does not include services which are substantially at the command of and for the exclusive use of any one person or of the Government;“registered trainee” means a person who is engaged under a registered training contract;“registered training contract” means a written contract accepted for registration pursuant to the provisions of section 19(1) whereby a person engages to serve another for a specified period in order to receive training in the profession of a chartered accountant or diplomate accountant.
Part II – Establishment of the Malawi Accountants Board
3. Establishment of the Malawi Accountants Board
4. Appointment and membership of the Board
5. Disqualification from appointment to the BoardA person shall be disqualified from being appointed as a member of the Board if that person—
6. Vacation of office by membersA member of the Board other than an ex officio member shall vacate his office—
7. Tenure of office
8. Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Board
9. Meetings of the Board
10. Quorum and majority decisions
11. Committees of the Board
12. Reports to the Minister
Part III – Funds of the Board
13. Funds of the Board and keeping and audit of accounts
14. Non-liability of the BoardNo legal proceedings, whether criminal or civil, shall lie against the Board in respect of any act or duty performed in good faith in accordance with the provisions of this Act.
15. Remuneration and allowances of members
Part IV – Functions, powers and objectives of the Board
16. General powers of the Board
17. Objectives of the BoardThe Board shall regulate the reporting of financial matters and provide direct oversight over professional accountancy bodies and auditors in order to—
18. Maintenance of standards of examinations
19. Registered training contracts
20. Powers and duties of auditors
21. Information to be furnished by registered accountantsEvery person who is registered as a practicing chartered accountant under this Act shall, subject to the provisions of subsection (3)—(a)notify the Board and every person whom he or his firm acts as auditor of any change in the name, constitution or address of such firm within fourteen days after the date on which such change takes place; and(b)furnish the following information within fourteen days after receiving a request therefor from any person for whom he or his firm acts as auditor or who proposes to appoint him or his firm as auditor—(i)every firm name or title under which he practices;(ii)the place or places of business of all partnerships in which he is in public practice as a partner;(iii)the full names of all his partners; and(iv)his nationality, his forenames or the initial thereof, his surname and every surname which he may have home previously and his ordinary business address and his residential address.[Please note: numbering as in original.]
Part V – Register and registration
22. Register of Chartered Accountants and Diplomate Accountants
23. Register to be open to inspectionAny person may inspect the Register and make copies of any entry therein at all reasonable times on payment of such fee as may be prescribed by the Board.
24. Compulsory registrationAny person resident and working in Malawi who is a member in good standing of the Institute or an association of accountants which is recognized by the Institute shall register as a member of the Institute within ninety days from either the date of commencement of this Act or taking up residence in Malawi.
25. Qualification for registration
26. General prohibition
27. Application for registration
29. Cancellation or suspension of registration
30. Restoration of registration
Part VI – Secretariat of the Board
31. Secretary and other staff of the BoardThe Board shall appoint a secretary and such other members of staff as shall enable the Board to carry out its functions in terms of this Act.
32. Disclosure of interest by employees, etc.
33. Oath of secrecyEvery—
34. Prohibition of publication or disclosure of information by unauthorized persons
35. Protection of employeesNo action suit or other proceedings shall be brought or instituted personally against any employee of the Board in respect of any act done in good faith in the course of carrying out the provisions of this Act.
Part VII – Discipline
36. Disciplinary proceedingsThe Institute shall be responsible, in the first instance, for the professional conduct of its members and, for that purpose, the Institute shall have power to undertake disciplinary proceedings against such members and to discipline them.
37. Review of disciplinary proceedings
38. Appeal to the Board against disciplinary action
39. Suspension of registered accountants who are mentally disabled
Part VIII – The Institute
40. Objectives of the InstituteThe Institute shall—
41. Functions of the InstituteThe Institute shall, subject to this Act and to the general or special directions of the Board, undertake diligently the following functions or any of such functions—
42. Powers of the Institute
Part IX – Practising certificate
43. Prohibition against practice without practising certificate
44. Application for practising certificateA person who wishes to obtain a practising certificate shall apply to the Institute in the form and manner prescribed, and shall submit with his application such fee, certificates, documents and information as may be prescribed.
45. Issue or refusal of practising certificate
46. Unregistered person prohibited from practicing
47. Period of validity of practising certificate
48. Withdrawal of practising certificate
49. Surrender of withdrawn or invalid practising certificateWhere a person has been advised in writing by the secretary of the Institute that a practising certificate issued to him has been withdrawn or has ceased to be valid, he shall forthwith and in any event within thirty days after being so advised return the practising certificate to the Institute.
Part X – Miscellaneous
50. Use of certain designations
51. Offences by unregistered persons
52. Offences and penalties
54. Appeals from decisions of the Board
57. RegulationsWithout derogation from the specific powers prescribed in this Act, the Minister, on the recommendation of the Board, may make regulations for the better carrying out of the purposes and provisions of this Act.
58. Compliance with the provisions of the Public Finance Management ActThe Board shall at all times comply with the provisions of Part VIII of the Public Finance Management Act.[Cap. 37:02]
59. Repeal and savings
Part XI – Transitional provisions
60. Saving of existing appointments and membership
61. Transfer of membership to professional accountancy bodies
62. Saving of existing programmes, students and qualifications
63. Transfer of employees
64. Transfer of assets, liabilities, etc.
History of this document
01 April 2014