The purpose, authority and responsibility of the internal audit function is formally defined in an audit charter and should be consistent with the Institute of Internal Auditors standards for internal auditing.

The purpose of the charter is to set out the nature, role, responsibility, status and authority of internal auditors within an institution and to outline the scope of the internal audit work. An internal audit charter cover the following topics:

  1. The purpose and mandate of internal audit.
  2. The mission, objective and scope of work.
  3. The accountability of internal auditor.
  4. Independence of internal auditor.
  5. Authority of internal auditor; and
  6. Quality assurance matters.

As a minimum requirement the internal audit charter gives internal auditors free and unrestricted access to all information, records, documentation, data and employees of the entity from both internal and external sources.

The Internal Audit function will assist the government in fulfilling its vision, mission, strategic initiatives, and objectives while adhering to its core value by bringing a systematic, disciplined approach to evaluate and improve the effectiveness of the risk management, internal control systems and governance processes.

Ultimately, the internal audit function will help ensure:

  1. Risks are appropriately identified and managed;
  2. Significant financial, managerial and operating information is accurate, reliable and timely;
  3. Employees’ actions are in compliance with government policies, standards, procedures and applicable laws and regulations;
  4. Government resources are acquired economically, used efficiently and adequately safeguarded;
  5. Government operations are transacted in accordance with sufficient internal controls, good business judgement and high ethical standards;
  6. Quality and continuous improvement are fostered in the government’s internal control processes;
  7. Significant legislative or regulatory issues impacting the government are recognised and addressed appropriately.
  8. Opportunities for improving the Ministries internal controls and operating efficiency may be identified during internal audits.  These opportunities will be shared with the audit committee and management.