In their endeavour to achieve sustainable development, developing states face serious challenges in public governance, particularly in general and public finance management. This article focuses on the problems of holding the public service to account for the achievement of objectives, compliance with relevant laws, efficient utilisation of public resources and accurate financial reporting. To ensure that the public service acts in the interests of the public it serves and secures the public interest, a system of governance, including monitoring and evaluation, is required. Governance occurs at various levels from the State to particular public organisations. The paper addresses the accountability of public accounting officers and authorities for their public finance responsibilities on the basis of performance (including finance) reports in the State and public governance contexts. The article aims to examine appropriateness of public finance management in the State and public governance contexts. The article’s objectives are, firstly, to establish the nature of public sector finance in the context of State governance, secondly, to determine the requirements for public finance management in public organisations in the context of public governance and, thirdly, to address aspects such as the financial responsibilities, accountability, monitoring and reporting relevant to public organisations’ governing bodies.