News Analysis

Examining the Proposed Reforms in Revenue Generating Agencies

As a way of addressing the country’s dwindling economy and heavy debt burden, the federal government moved to boost its resources by directly taking control of revenue management of its ten most lucrative enterprises.

These enterprises include Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS and Nigeria Customs Service, NCS.

Others are Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN and Nigeria Shippers’ Council, NSC.

Commenting on the development, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed noted that the initiative was in compliance with the presidential approval conveyed through the Secretary to the Government of the Federation’s circular on the approved revenue performance management Framework for Government-Owned Enterprises, FGOEs.

Mrs Ahmed expressed optimism that the presence of Directors of Revenue at the enterprises will ensure strict adherence to extant rules and regulations in the areas of approved budget as well as due process mechanism in procurement and payments.

Furthermore, the directors would be involved in the revenue operations of the agencies, have a better understanding of business processes and operations leading to improved transparency and accountability in the revenue reporting of the FGOEs.

In addition, they are expected to seek opportunities and avenues for revenue improvements which is the ultimate aim of the government.

It will be recalled that the federal government introduced the Treasury Single Account, TSA, ostensibly to ensure effective monitoring and collection of its revenue.

The minister added that, the duties of the directors would be aided with the deployment of Information Technology to ensure transparency and accountability.

Accountant General of the federation, Mr Ahmed Idris opined that the initiative is to achieve transparency and accountability of government revenue with special focus on FGOEs, improved revenue performance and ultimately provide a sustainable source of funding for government budget execution.

The policy is a reform initiative aimed at generating more revenue and associated remittances into the government coffers and also improve the operational performances of all FGOEs.

Unfortunately, it has been discovered that a number of government owned enterprises remitted less than the operating surplus to the consolidated revenue fund as required by law of financial regulations.

To ensure the success of this measure, auditors both internal and external should be proactive by ensuring that the government does not lose any revenue through leakages, wastages and corrupt practices.

It is of utmost importance that the Directors of Revenue in the FGOEs, discharge their duties as expected which will in turn translate to economic growth for the nation.

Titilayo Kupoliyi

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