As business and the societies become more enlightened and complex, methods of perpetrating fraud become more sophisticated. As a result of this, the issue of fraud has become a serious food for though many corporate bodies in recent times. The scenario is alarming in view of the serious threats posed by fraud to corporate growth and existence. There is no denying the fact that fraud has become a ‘recognized’ institution in the national and internal financial system and the fraudsters through their show affluence are well respected as heroes instead of villains. Most corporate management shuns the practice of reporting fraud to the public to protect their image and goodwill and to win the confidence of investors. The implication of this is that corporations are now faced with the arduous task of how to prevent, control and minimize the canker worms. As a result of this, internal control which is an indispensable tool necessary for the prevention, detection and control of fraud in both the public and private sectors should be given grater consideration and emphasis.
1.2 Background of the Study
Nigerian Bottling Company Plc, Uyo was incorporated as a private limited liability company on the 31st July, 1974 the same time with South East Breweries limited to Cross River Breweries Limited, because of political imperative in Nigeria and thereafter to Champion Breweries limited. On the 1st of September, 1992 the latter name, Champion Breweries limited was change to Nigerian Bottling Company Plc.
The government of the south Eastern State of Nigeria on the 24th of November, 1974, the then eastern State of Nigeria Signed an agreement with Messrs. Haase Braverie GMBH of Humbry (“Technical Partners”) for the supply and construction of a turkey Brewery in Uyo with a capacity of 150,000 hectoliters. The foundation stone of the Brewery was officially commissioned and it’s product, Champion larger beer launched into the market with success on the 11th December 1976.
The Brewery was officially commissioned and its products, champion larger beer launched into the market with initial capacity of 150,000 hectoliters per annum. The second expansion which incorporated more sophisticated machinery was complete and put on trial run in September, 1979. The second product line was officially commissioned on the 11th of December, 1997 with enhanced capacity of 500,000 hectoliters per annum. The same year company’s product “Champion larger beer” and “champion Malta” won silver medal for quality at the 16th world selection for beer and non-alcoholic beverages in Luxemburg. Consequent upon pressure of demand for its capacity to one million hectoliters. The third expansion, which gulped substantial resources, could not be realized. The non-completion of the expansion programme coupled with lack of working capital and inadequate maintenance of the plants forced the company to close its doors for business between 1990 and 1991. All subsequent reactivation attempts did not yield the desired results with the advent of democracy in Nigeria in May 1999; the government of Akwa Ibom State made the reactivation the Brewery a cardinal activity. Consequently, the Akwa Ibom State investment and industrial promotion council (AKIPOC) was changed with the responsibility to reactivate the company pursuant of this mandate, AKIPOC, in conjunction with the Board of Directors of the Company went to the market of solicit for core investors/technical managers. In the process, Messrs Montgomery ventures incorporated of panama (with offices in Geneva, Switzerland) was indentified and brought into the company as core investors/technical managers after a memorandum of understanding was signed. Based on the memorandum, a reactivation committer was sent up a board of the company to work with core investors/technical managers for the revamping of the company.
The reactivation process, which commenced in February, 2000 lasted about nineteen months. Now, the plant has been revamped and restricted to used one hundred percent locally sourced raw materials. The Brewery is now fully operational and the capacity id 500,000 hectoliters per annum. The reactivated Brewery was officially commissioned on the 23rd of October, 2001. Champion larger beer is now in the market and is doing well. The company has as at 2006 incorporated other products into it production line such product are “Cham Malta” fondly known and called “The new way to Flow” and “Becks Beer”. The company has successfully held an extraordinary. General meeting of the shareholders during which approval was given for the authorized share capital of the company to be increased from N26 million to N450 million. As at now, the core investor/technical managers Messrs Montgonery ventures incorporated ownership status in the company is 57%.
1.3 Statement of the Problem
Cases of fraud are becoming a recurrent feature of our present administrative system as private and public sectors continue to occupy conspicuous positions in the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) annual report and Accounts. 1991 account Report which disclosed that since 1989 to date, clerks and cashiers have continued to maintain the lead among other categories of staff in frauds and forgeries in the private and public sector.
1.4 Objectives of the Study
The objectives of this research centers on the following:
1. To determine whether internal control system could lead to efficient and effective management of the company.
2. To discover other factors leading to the decline in the profitability of Nigerian Bottling Company Plc, Uyo.
3. To find out the areas of weaknesses of the internal control system and possible remedial actions necessary to reverse the trend.
4. To determine the extent of compliance with the laid down controls in the organization.
5. To make recommendation and suggestions on the findings of this research.
1.5 Research Questions/Hypothesis
Research question are interrogative statements to find out the likely outcome of a given situations. It is probing in nature. In reviewing of the assessment of the impact of internal control on fraud prevention and effective management in Nigerian Bottling Company Plc, Uyo, the researcher formulated the following research questions to aid the study.
• Has any case of fraud been reported recently?
• Is the internal control system sound enough to detect fraud?
• What are the causes of fraud in this company?
• How could fraud be prevented in Nigerian Bottling Company Plc, Uyo?
Hypothesis is a statement of relationship between variables; it is a tentative answer to research problem n a declarative statement about something.
Ho: There is no significant relationship between internal control system and effective management of Nigerian Bottling Company Plc, Uyo.
Hi: There is significant relationship between internal control system and effective management of Nigerian Bottling Company Plc, Uyo.
Ho: There is no direct relationship between internal control and fraud prevention in Nigerian Bottling Company Plc.
Hi: There is direct relationship between internal control and fraud prevention in Nigerian Bottling Company Plc.
1.6 Significance of the Study
The significance of the research work need not to under estimate. The study on completion would serve as a reference material for other researchers who may carry out a research on similar topic. The research study would help the management of Champion Breweries to assess the effectiveness of their internal controls system.
It will act as an eye opener to other organizations on the procedure to be followed in instituting a proper system of internal controls. It will add to the stock of existing literature in the internal controls as a tool for effective management and fraud prevention; thereby providing a source of reference materials to other researcher. Finally, it will be an aid in providing further techniques of safeguarding assets of the organization against waste, fraud and inefficiency.
1.7 Scope of the Study
The study would be exclusively carried out in Nigerian Bottling Company Plc, Uyo Akwa Ibom State with particular attention to the Assessment of the Impact of Internal Controls on Fraud Prevention and Effective Management.
1.8 Limitations of the Study
The following were constraints to the conduct of the survey:
Firstly, the time allotted for the study was grossly inadequate; hence it may impede the quality of the data gathered and in turn the quality of the result.
Secondly, the huge financial requirement for the conduct of this survey was unaffordable. Thus, only materials that were easily assessable and affordable were used.