18 Firms Set To Audit MDAs …As FG Reviews Agencies’ Cost Profile

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L-R: Senior Techanical Adviser to the Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Ambakederemo Eniye, Chief Executive Officer, Time Economics, Dr Ogho Okiti, Chairman, Mothergold Consulting, Dr Sina Fagbenro-Byron and Marketer of GT Bank, Mr Nnamdi Ogbonna, at the Time Economics Breakfast meeting in collaboration with Businessday in Abuja on Wednesday.

The Federal Government has hired 18 professional audit companies to carry out a forensic audit of its agencies to access true state of their revenue generation.
Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF), Mr. Ahmed Idris, said the audit process would cover the period of 2010 to 2015, and would be completed in 18 months.
Idris said that the audit would also cover capital, personnel and overhead expenditure across all Federal Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
Addressing the consultants selected to handle the task at an interactive session in Abuja, the AGF, represented by the Director of Funds, Alhaji Salau Zubairu , said the audit would aid the Federal Government in arriving at better decisions, in view of the dwindling inflow of government revenue .
He said the first phase of the assignment was divided into two categories and will involve 33 agencies.
According to him, category A comprises eight agencies with a turnover of above N100 billion and category B involves 25 agencies with a turnover of below N100billion.
The AGF said some of the terms of reference given to the consultants were to review the sources of revenues accruing to the organisations and the effectiveness of revenue generation and accounting.
Ahmed said the consultants were to establish the cost of operations and make appropriate recommendations to understand real personnel cost and cost associated with revenue collection or revenue sharing arrangement.
He assured the consultants of the support and assistance of the OAGF in discharging their duties.
He said, however, that their activities would be closely monitored by experienced staff of the OAGF to ensure that government gets value for money.
Meanwhile, the Federal Government, yesterday, said that it had commenced the review of the cost profile of all its revenue generating agencies.
Speaking at a two-day National Revenue Retreat in Kano, the Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, said that the measure was necessary in order to ensure that maximum operating surpluses were declared and remitted in compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act.
The retreat was organised by the Ministry of Finance as part of government’s effort to brainstorm on how to shift emphasis from oil to non-oil revenue.
Adeosun said that the measure was necessary in order to ensure that maximum operating surpluses were declared and remitted in compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act.
She said that the ministry had commenced a number of audits of a range of agencies that would provide the government improved visibility into the revenue and cost profiles.
“This will enable us to generate an indicative cost profile that can be used to establish reasonable budget targets going forward,” she said.
The minister stressed that the focus was now on non-oil revenue generation, adding that exploiting solid minerals and agricultural sectors of the economy was necessary so as to take full advantage of the value opportunities.
According to her, the country must improve its revenue collection efforts as our revenue to GDP ratio is far lower than that of ours peers.
“Nigeria’s tax to GDP is only six per cent versus 26 per cent in South Africa and 21 per cent in Tunisia. This is actually good news as it reflects the opportunity for growth,” she said.