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Secretaries' body to review its governing Act

By Patrick Alushula | August 11th 2016

The Institute of Certified Public Secretaries of Kenya (ICPSK) has begun the process of reviewing the Act that governs its members in the country.

The Chairman of the body, Tom Omariba said overhauling the 1988 Certified Public Secretaries (CPS) Act will help strengthen the role of secretaries in Kenya in areas such as cooperate governance audits.

“We had discussions internally as members of the profession and that is what led to suggested amendments. We have invited stakeholders to negotiate what we need to incorporate in the new Act before sending the draft to the relevant ministry,” said Omariba.

The draft amendments show ICPSK is considering to remove the Registration of Certified Public Secretaries Board from National Treasury and make it a department within ICPSK. The secretaries’ body is also seeking to re-constitute its disciplinary committee. In a draft prepared by Mohammed Muigai Advocates, the firm had recommended that the committee include non-members.

However, one of the oldest members of ICPSK, Erastus Gitau, cautioned that this may sell away the independence of the body in regulating its own members, especially if the Government is given powers to come on board.

“One major tenet of professional bodies is self-regulation. If we go the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK) way, we may have problems,” said Gitau, referring to a case where ICPAK council could not sack its former disciplinary committee chairman Jonathan Ciano because he was appointed by the Finance ministry.

Players are also deliberating on whether to introduce annual practising certificates, which will see members pay a stipulated amount to renew them. However, during yesterday’s deliberations, most members said introducing the fee could be an impediment to increasing membership.

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