Distinguished expert on corporate governance, Dr. Kofi Kodua Sarpong, last Tuesday, delivered a lecture at the Graduate Campus on Corporate Disclosure Issues as part of the School’s Corporate Executives in Residence Programme (CERP). This is Dr. Sarpong’s second appearance, concluding his time on the CERP for the academic year.
Hosted by the Department of Finance, the Board Chair of Royal Bank Ltd. first highlighted the importance of corporate governance by drawing on its relationship with society and establishing its link to accounting, which also deals with such essentials as human/physical capital and technology. He identified the pillars of corporate governance as well as the users of corporate information, whom he classified into internal and external.
As part of the internal users, Dr. Sarpong said board members use corporate information to evaluate CEO performance while public interest groups, as part of external users, may use it to pressurise firms to tow a moral line.
The multiplicity of users of a report presents unique challenges and companies must therefore make choices since they cannot please their audiences, he said.
He engaged students in a discussion on the scope of annual corporate reports which, he said, includes financial and non-financial information, and the uses of such reports, mentioning investment, financial and dividend decisions as three key uses.
Dr. Sarpong also struck the difference between mandatory and voluntary information, as well as traditional and non-traditional reporting framework and outlined the major influences on corporate disclosures.
He finally directed students to identify the costs and benefits of annual corporate reports before outlining its steps.
Present at the lecture was the Dean of UGBS, Prof. Joshua Abor, who said Dr. Sarpong is one of a number of corporate executives in residence slated to mentor students, deliver lectures and provide network opportunities in furtherance of the School’s bid to strengthen industry engagement. He therefore urged students to exploit the opportunity of Dr. Sarpong’s presence in that vein.
Also in attendance at the programme were faculty members as well as the School Administrator and Assistant Registrar of UGBS.
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