Guyanese tops world at accounting exam

Guyana Chronicle
June 29, 1999

TOP officials of the Caribbean arm of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) have hailed the efforts of a Guyanese student who topped the world in an examination run by the United Kingdom-based accounting body.

Ms. Roseanna Morgan achieved the remarkable feat of scoring 96 marks to attain the highest score worldwide in Paper Five of the ACCA's Information Analysis exam.

A release from the association said Morgan made history by becoming the first person from Guyana and the Caribbean region to score the highest marks in a worldwide examination supervised by the ACCA since the prizes for best worldwide students began in 1997.

She attained this score at the sitting of the ACCA exams in Guyana last December, topping 11,669 students across the world.

"Your performance in this exam is a shining example to all ACCA students in the Caribbean as it again proves the possibility that Caribbean people, be they students, accountants or leaders, can compete with the best in the world regardless of their limitations, financially, economically or otherwise", said Head of the ACCA's Caribbean Affairs, Trinidadian, Mr. Emile Valere.

Valere, a former business journalist, flew to Guyana earlier this month to participate in an award presentation cocktail to honour Morgan, an Assistant Accountant at the Demerara Mutual Life Assurance Society Ltd.

"Our potential is guided by our thoughts and ambitions. That is why we must think global, but act local for the advancement of our countries", Valere said.

"Given this is my first official statement in Guyana, it would be remiss of me if I did not add that the establishment of the ACCA Caribbean office is testimony of our loyalty and commitment to the development of the accounting profession and competencies in the Caribbean".

The award ceremony, held at the Hotel Tower in Georgetown, was attended by several key functionaries, including Finance Minister, Mr. Bharrat Jagdeo, Chairman of the Private Sector Commission, Mr. Yesu Persaud and ACCA International Assembly Representative in Guyana, Mr. Christopher Ram.

"It is so important for us to celebrate these positive moments in our country instead of always focussing on the negatives," said Jagdeo, who at the time was holding intense negotiations with the public service unions, which were calling for a 40 per cent wage hike.

Jagdeo stressed the need for tertiary level education in Guyana as an important step in the country's development and complimented the ACCA for its role in contributing towards the pool of accounting resources in Guyana.

Persaud, an ACCA member, told the audience, which comprised mostly of ACCA students, that it was important to think global and that if they graduated with the ACCA or any other international qualification in Guyana, it would not limit their practice to this country but could qualify them to work almost anywhere in the world.

Valere said ACCA student numbers have soared in the Caribbean region, including by more than 200 per cent in some countries in a single year.

The Certified Accounting Technician qualification is one area which has been especially popular with Caribbean students.

The ACCA plans to facilitate the development of this and to promote other ACCA qualifications, he said.

These include the Diploma in Accounting and Finance and the ACCA professional chartered accounting qualification.

The less known diploma is geared towards providing the basics in accounting for non-accountants but giving its graduates a global qualification.

The U.K. body is also improving its syllabus and qualifications to meet global changes in the financial and commercial sectors, added Valere.

Meanwhile, President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Guyana, Mr. Harryram Parmesar, also heaped praise on Morgan for accomplishing a feat never achieved before by a Caribbean national.

Parmesar, who also chaired the awards ceremony, hailed the feat as "exceptional", saying it was a proud moment for Morgan, the accounting profession and the country.

In Guyana, of 37 students who attempted Paper Five in December 1997, 19 were successful.

In June 1998, just four students out of 30 attained passes in this paper.

However, the success rate was much higher in December 1998 when Morgan clinched a place in ACCA history, with 27 out of 38 winning passes, the association said.

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