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Reps to plug revenue leakages of MDAs

04 December 2012, 16:16

Abuja - The House of Representatives on Tuesday in Abuja promised to work toward plugging all revenue leakages of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) in line with the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007.  

 Speaker Aminu Tambuwal said this at a meeting of the House of Representatives Committee on Finance with revenue generating agencies of government.  

Tambuwal, who was represented by the Deputy Speaker Emeka Ihedioha said that MDAs would be made to account for and remit adequately revenues generated to the consolidated account.

He said that there was no discretionary approach to remittances to the Federation Account.

  “The method of remitting the revenue and the government account or fund, where it may be remitted may be different.

“There is, however, no room for discretionary approach to revenue remittances, " he said.  

 He noted that some MDAs had failed to remit adequately revenues generated to the consolidated account of government.   

The speaker said that the house was considering a law that would ensure that agencies of government complied with revenue remittances.  

"New legislation may be considered to ensure compliance so that the nation would earn what is due to it from the revenue earning departments and agencies of government.

 "MDAs will be made to account for and remit to the Consolidated Revenue Fund of the Federation incomes received on behalf of the Federal Government,” he said.  

The speaker warned that the practice whereby agencies of government spent their funds at their discretion would no longer be tolerated.  

 "A situation where more than 50 per cent of actual government revenue is spent outside the national annual budget has put Nigeria in a fiscal crisis.   

"It makes our budgeting system inefficient, ineffectual, and opaque. It does not promote accountability, transparency,'' he said.  

He noted that the constitution and laws on revenue generation had been variously breached by government agencies.  

"The Constitution and our laws on revenue generation and expenditure have been observed more in breach, "he said.  

He urged relevant committees of the house to propose amendments to any existing laws that were unconstitutional.  

Earlier, Rep. Abdulmumin Jibrin (PDP-Kano), Chairman of the committee, said the meeting was not to probe or investigate any agency but a fact finding exercise, “to make our budget more transparent.”  

He observed that agencies spent what they generated contrary to the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act.  

According to him, the meeting will enable the committee to track previously uncaptured internally generated revenue of government.  

He said that the meeting would also help to monitor agencies compliance with the provision of the Act.  

Jibrin noted that there was always a discrepancy in figures between the Budget office and the Agencies.  

Reflection of surpluses in the revenue framework instead of gross collections as on other revenue sub heads.  

He noted that Internal laws of the agencies seemed to empower the agencies to spend their revenues that is not provided for in the constitution.  

Agencies of government present at the meeting were NAN,NDIC, BOI,National Lottery Regulatory Commission among others.  

However, 15 agencies absent on the occasion were CBN, NCC, Nigeria Customs Services, NPA, NNPC and FAAN among others.  

They were given up till Wednesday to appear before the committee.

NAN

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