FEDERAL Government has approved a new reporting template that will guide the process of accounting for revenue of agencies of government.
The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, disclosed this in Abuja at the opening ceremony of a workshop on revenue generation, accounting and reporting to the Federation Allocation Accounting Committee (FAAC).
The Minister who said the approval of the template was given by President Muhammadu Buhari, explained that the revenue reporting framework was targeted at generating more revenue and improving operational performance.
Ahmed said while the National Economic Council had in the past called for a review of the template, the President decided to grant that request through the approval of a new template.
In her words, “The reporting template had been an issue for quite sometimes and I strongly supported members’ demand for a revised template that would provide in transparent manner on revenue generation.
“The demand of members was further reinforced by the request of NEC for a review and Mr President’s directives for a new template that would clearly report the revenue in a transparent and customer friendly manner.
“ I am further happy to note that the template had been produced and approved for use by the President, ” she added.
The Minister also said he workshop should not only concentrate on the template but also be used to enlighten members as to the dangers of depending on oil in the face of downward trend in revenue generation. Adding that, ” it has become necessary for government to diversify it’s sources of revenue by reducing its dependence on oil.”
Ahmed urged the revenue-generating agencies to double their efforts towards surpassing their previous records and meeting their targets.
Earlier in his remark, the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) Alhaji Ahmed Idris said the issue of revenue generation and reporting was of great concern to the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation (OAGF)
He said, “This workshop will extensively dwell on the new template, as understanding the numbers presented at FAAC is very germane and has the potential of limiting the previous time expended at each sitting.
“I wish to use this opportunity, where all the major revenue-generating agencies are gathered to inform you that Mr President has approved a new and improved performance management framework for government-owned enterprises.”
Idris said the objective. of the framework is to raise revenue generation and the associated remittances into Government Treasury.
The AGF said based on the performance management framework approved by the President, the OAGF would carry out regular monitoring and ensure monthly publication of revenue and expenditure performance.
Idris said, the financial circulars on limit of allowable expenses, frequency of board meetings, overseas travels and other potentially wasteful practices would be strictly enforced.
The AGF added that annual capital budgets of government agencies would be mainstreamed into the Federal Government’s capital budgets to ensure same level of scrutiny.
Idris said henceforth the accounts of all agencies of government must be audited within four months after the end of each financial year, adding that quarterly remittance of interim operating surplus of government-owned enterprises (GEOs) would replace the annual remittance.
According to him, It shall also be mandatory for all GEOs to use the treasury Single Account (TSA).
Idris further said that legislative action would also be required to amend relevant sections of the Act establishing some of the GOEs to reflect current economic realities and policy thrust of government.
Idris noted the necessity for the OAGF to ensure that the scarce resources entrusted in its custody is adequately managed.