CIN Holds Board Retreat to Perfect Strategy for Chartered Status, to Break 4-Year Old Jinx
The Compliance Institute, Nigeria (CIN) held its 2021 Board Retreat aimed at extending the frontiers of the institute and more importantly get the different stakeholders on the same page with a view to charting a new course for the body as it perfects a new strategy to get the blessing of the national assembly as it aims to become a body of professionals chartered by the act of parliament.
Blessed with corporate stakeholders which include the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC), National Insurance Commission(NAICOM), Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Nigeria Police (NP), Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU), Special Control Unit Against Money Laundering (SCUML), National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to mention but a few, the CIN has decided to explore the knowledge and competencies of this individual bodies to push its case at the national assembly.
Interacting theme: “Expanding The Frontiers”, the virtual retreat which held between Friday 21st and Saturday 22nd May, had lead two presenters and discussants focused on expanding the scope and mandate of the Institute to cater for all spectrums of professionals and officers within the Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement Departments of all Private and Public institutions in Nigeria.
“Piloting the Institute towards Legislative Charter and Road Map for Regulatory Framework for a Resilient Professional Institute in Nigeria” became the focal point of discussions especially as this is has been on the front burner in the last four years with little or no success.
Making a presentation on, “Running a Professional Institute Limited by Guarantee: Organisational Structure and Leading Practices”, Linus Okeke Forensic & Integrity Services Leader (West Africa) Risk Management & Independence Leader (West Cluster), Ernst & Young noted that organisational challenges faced by some professional institutes include: process, succession, and governance. Others, he revealed include credibility of the leadership and the body; conflict of Interest, and poor stakeholder engagement.
For the Ernst & Young, West Cluster Lead, running a successful professional institute limited by guarantee will require a focus on all aspects of the organization. These include:
“Process – 1. The professional institute will need to design its processes to enable it to achieve its desired state and 2. To be successful, an institute must implement process monitoring controls to affirm that the processes consistently satisfy its organisational requirements and are updated as necessary; People – 1. People are the alter ego of an organization and 2. Quality of people behind an organisation determines its future. Likewise, Technology is also critical – Technology plays a crucial role in the life of a successful professional institute. 2. A professional institute should look into various tools available for automating its operations to an enterprise scale.
The presenter declared to the virtual audience that clear vision and sound organisational structure; good corporate governance as well as foolproof succession planning as it expected that leaders should grow within the institute; are germane to building a successful organization or institute.
Also to be in place are tested structure for Funding – annual/subscription due, donations, examination, etc; Robust financial and regulatory reporting; Meetings of corporate organs – Board of Directors and members in general meeting and Rendition of returns to regulators and Stakeholder management.
He also warned that the institute must have a user-friendly and informative website, affiliations with like-minded institutes locally and internationally are advised. There must be a code of conduct/ethics for members; continuing professional education/training; bespoke policies and procedures manuals; embrace Corporate Social Responsibility – sustainability reporting and members must be wary of involvement in partisan politics.
In conclusion, Okeke submits that a successfully run professional institute will contribute to “building a better working world by adding great value to its members and other stakeholders. It should convince itself that it has done so, and its stakeholders attest to such value add”.
Also speaking on the theme: “Expanding the frontiers” Abdullahi Yola, OON, FPA as the second keynote speaker disclosed that that to galvanize a resilient framework for a professional institute in Nigeria, the Legislature must have a role to play by way of legislation.
Therefore, his model framework for the CIN, proposes a review of economic regulations which consist of four principal elements. These are the policy goals, policy instruments, policy implementation, and evaluation.
According to Abdullahi, a regulatory framework is an accountability mechanism and compliance is an intentional function that forms an integral part of regulatory policy. “For the framework to be truly effective, it must be explicit, visible, and transparent”, he advised.
“The Compliance Institute of Nigeria MUST formulates a detailed checklist of its objectives and the extent of applicability. It is important to observe that the most formidable method of regulating professional entities is legislation by the relevant body. This may take the form of direct legislation by a law-making authority or subsidiary legislation. This form of legislation is more effective and desirable in cases where bodies are formed with a view to controlling the activities of different professional areas”, he noted.
Discussing the submissions during the Panel session Ibrahim Bello, espoused that there are internal and external factors to be put in place. The internal factors include having a good library in place, continuous learning/ training for continuous professional development, the institute, and its members must move with time while the experience base of members connected with the institute also plays a key role.
On the external side, discussants reckoned that partnerships are important while noting that the body is as good as the associations it attracts to itself as partners. It must also provide information that upskills, while the body must as a matter of necessity organise conferences and seminars.
While it is pertinent that CIN must submit a request to the national assembly, Bello noted that the most difficult part of this, is working the national assembly – as their language and timing are mostly at variance with the standard 9 am -5 pm working hours. Similarly, writing a bill for the commencement of the charter status and the lobbying process, need specialist attention.
While advising that CIN may have to make do with specialists in Lobbying, he noted the process is fraught with landmines the relevant committee must speak to those who have been there before us; and strictly follow the rule to avoid delays such as the harrowing experience of the past four years. As time is of essence, Ibrahim warned that further delays might occasion starting all over again should the 9th assembly run its course without the CIN pushing through the motion.
Some participants are visibly worried that the move could be an acidic test for the CIN as it is generally believed that you can hardly get a bill passed without “paying something” which is antithetical to the reputation and objectives of the CIN. Hence, its worry and continuous quarry to manage its relationship the Senate without being found wanting on its set rules and regulations bothering on compliance and globally acceptable standards!
Alleviating this fear Ibrahim said, “The more partnerships like CBN and other stakeholders and regulators we can bring in the better. Some of them like the CBN, our regulator, have platforms on the ground already through which they interact with the national assembly. We can activate these to advantage in this regard”
Pattison Boleigha President, Compliance Institute, Nigeria also making his contribution also noted that partnerships are being deployed by the CIN to advantage. For instance, CIN recently made a courtesy call on the DG, NITDA on its 20th Anniversary among other key stakeholders’ visits.
With many more in the pipeline, and having in place the internal and external requirements, the CIN may very well be on its way to breaking the 4-year old jinx which has kept it away from its much desired and prestigious “chartered” status.