RICS has appointed a former civil servant with a 42-year career as its new audit committee chair.
Mike Driver, currently president of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, takes on the role with immediate effect and for the next three years.
Driver left the Civil Service in September and will operate independently in he RICS role, reporting to institution’s governing council.
The Audit Committee is comprised of two RICS members, Peter Lewis MRICS and Tom Barclay FRICS, and an independent member, Brigid Sutcliffe. Amongst the committee’s responsibilities are monitoring the integrity and effectiveness of RICS’ financial reporting, internal control and risk management systems, reviewing anti-fraud measures and recommending the appointment of the external auditor.
Driver says: “RICS is a globally recognised professional body and I look forward to providing the strong independent oversight and constructive challenge that it needs and, in particular, to lead and modernise the audit committee.”
Over the summer Alison Levitt QC wrote a 467 page review following media revelations earlier this year concerning failures by RICS to act on a report by accountancy firm BDO. The BDO report said that two years ago RICS was at risk of “unidentified fraud, misappropriation of funds and misreporting of financial performance.”
BDO’s report also gave the lowest possible 'no assurance' rating for the effectiveness of RICS’ financial controls - something which Levitt described as being “the most significant criticism an auditor can make” of an organisation.
RICS has already issued apologies to four non-executive directors who wanted the organisation to act on the BDO report’s concerns, but who instead had their appointments terminated.