The Nigerian lawmakers has exposed the failure of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to remit about 2 trillion naira into federal government coffers.
This revelation was made Wednesday, by the Senate Committee on Public Accounts led by Senator Mathew Urhoghide (Edo South).
Briefing National Assembly Reporters after Wednesday’s plenary session, Senator Urhoghide said, information from the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation shows that all Federal Government Statutory Corporations, Commissions, Authorities and Agencies are not up to date with the submission of their annual accounts.
The Public Accounts Committee has also threatened that it would soon commence the publication of defaulting agencies using the mass media.
“Information from the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation shows that all Federal Governments Satutory Corporations, Commissions, Authorities and Agencies are not up-to-date with the submission of their annual accounts and audited reports to the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation as specified by section 85 (3) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“They have therefore violated the provisions of Section 85 (3) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria”, the committee said.
To ensure compliance of the constitution and extant laws guiding the agemcies, the Senate Committee also threatened to carry out several actions, including suspension of approval of the budget of defaulting agencies.
“This committee will ensure that all parastatals comply with the constitutional provision of submission of their annual reports and audited accounts to the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation promptly.
“Infact the Committee has concluded plans to publish their names in the mass media, from now on, appropriate sanctions shall be applied, the Committee will further recommend to the Senate to suspend approval of the budget of the defaulting agencies until they comply”, the Committee told Journalists.
To demonstrate the commitment of the red chamber to ensuring that revenues are promptly remitted by MDAs, the Public Accounts Committee, according to Senator Urhoghide, is working towards passing necessary bills to strengthen the constitutional powers of the Office of the Auditor General of the Federation.
He said “Efforts are on to conclude legislative work and give speedy consideration and passage to the Federal Audit Service Commission Bill referred to it by the Senate for further legislative action.
“The Committee is quite aware of the daunting challenges facing the Office and will ensure that this bill is given the desired attention for it to be passed.
“The Intention of the committee is to conclude work on the Bill before the end of December this year.
“Currently, the law governing the Office is the Audit Ordinance Act 1958, a law obviously overdue for review”.