Change the world


Nelson Mandela University’s School of Accounting has partnered with the Eastern Cape Governance in what should be a win-win arrangement for both parties.


Prof Houdini Fourie (left), Gloria Spelman (PGDIA Advisory Board Chairperson) and Prof Mario Labuschagne were instrumental in establishing an incubation hub to give Postgraduate Diploma in Internal Auditing graduates hands-on job training.

Establishment of an incubation hub means the Postgraduate Diploma in Internal Auditing (PGDIA) graduates will obtain much-needed job training as internal auditors and the Eastern Cape Provincial Government, inclusive of local structures, will strengthen its governance structures.

This, in turn, will assist in supporting economic recovery and reconstruction of the Eastern Cape.

“The partnership supports the province but also the development of a graduate’s competency in relation to the specific discipline by allowing for practical application of classroom principles and theories to take place in a real-world environment,” says Professor Mario Labuschagne, the University’s internal audit education partnership co-ordinator.

He says 21 deserving and qualifying students were identified by the PGDIA Selection Committee and started their job training in May last year.

Internal auditing is one of the fastest growing professions globally with qualified internal auditors becoming increasingly important in both the private and public sectors for improving corporate governance structures.

Prof Labuschagne and Professor Houdini Fourie identified the possibility of partnering with the Eastern Cape government via discussions held at their PGDIA Advisory Board meetings.

Both believe that, considering the current state of financial affairs in the Eastern Cape, investing in the education and training of future internal auditors ultimately means improved ability to manage and mitigate risks to improve service delivery at provincial and local government level.

It is hoped the partnership with the University’s School of Accounting in the Faculty of Business and Economic Sciences will address the high occurrence of qualified Auditor General of South Africa (AGSA) annual audit reports, which indicates a lack of confidence in the organisation’s financial statements and reporting practices.

“The Incubator Programme will benefit the young aspirant internal auditors in the Eastern Cape by providing them with sought after professional skills that they can only obtain while actively involved (employed) in the real world of internal auditing. Our students will perform internal audit engagements (manual and computerised) and act as internal audit managers or internal audit consultants in the province.

“It works for the province, and it works for us,” says Prof Labuschagne.

The next cycle only of internship training starts in May 2025 with an anticipated placement of another 30 students funded by Finance and Account Services Sector Education and Training Authority (FASSET) over the two-year cycle.

He says qualified internal auditors are equipped to provide provincial and municipal managers with advice and guidance on risks, risk management (enterprise wide and at operational level) and mitigation of risks through sound internal control systems.

In addition, the university is geographically favourably positioned to leverage on its existing capabilities, knowledge base and experience to provide current and future strategic governance support to the Eastern Cape provincial government in its drive to fulfil the objectives as set out in the National Development Plan (NDP) 2030.

Contact information
Mrs Debbie Derry
Deputy Director: Communication
Tel: 041 504 3057