South Africa is richer by 282 professional accountants, according to results released by SAIPA – the South African Institute of Professional Accountants – from the latest professional evaluation exam written by 328 qualifying candidates.
“Prior to writing the exam, candidates need to prove compliance to a strict set of academic and practical requirements,” said Rashied Small, Education, Training and Membership Executive of SAIPA. “Passing the professional evaluation exam is the final requirement for earning the designation of Professional Accountant (SA).”
The designation is one of the few authorised by SARS to provide services as a tax practitioner. A professional accountant can also perform numerous functions and issue reports in terms of the Companies Act, Close Corporations Act, and Micro lending industry regulations, Sectional Titles Act, Non-Profit Organisations Act, and Schools Act.
The professional evaluation examination was aligned with the International Education Standards 6 (IES 6) Assessments, with an emphasis on the principles of competency-based assessment.
“The benefit for future employers or clients is that they will benefit sooner from the combined competence and expertise of the Professional Accountant (SA) beyond the preparation of financial statements for compliance purposes,” explained Small.
Those who passed the professional evaluation examination were tested on the application of technical knowledge, cognitive skills with the focus on analysis and synthesis, and attributes or soft-skills with greater emphasis on analytical reading skills, critical thinking skills, and writing skills.
Small also extended a word of special congratulations to Nadia Gouws and Stephanie Williams, the candidates that achieved the two top scores. Both Gouws and Williams were part of the Project Achiever intervention funded by the Financial & Accounting Sector Education and Training Authority (Fasset).
The Project Achiever joint venture was initiated in 2015 to address the question of transformation in the financial services industry by providing the assistance where it is most needed – among black professionals. The initiative is funded in majority by Fasset – one of the 21 Seta’s that have been established by the South African government in terms of the Skills Development Act, in order to helps bridge the skills gap, particularly the gap between having a qualification and building a successful professional career.
Four of the top 10 candidates were from the Project Achiever initiative.
The top ten candidates for this examination were:
Ranking First name Region
1 Nadia Gouws Midrand
2 Stephanie Williams Cape Town
3 Travis Hofman Pretoria
4 Sean Reynolds Pretoria
5 Benjamin van Coller Bloemfontein
6 Stacy van Eyk Port Elizabeth
7 Aradhna Deepchund Durban
8 Maarten Potgieter Bloemfontein
9 Daniel Strachan Pretoria
10 Wisdom Zimuto Midrand