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Public Service Stinks Of Corruption – FG

Posted: Sep 8, 2015 at 1:53 am   /   by   /   comments (1)

• Threatens To Sanction Erring MDAs Over Single Treasury Account

• CBN, Experts Parley On Investors’ Confidence

By Chesa Chesa and Innocent Oweh,  Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday in Abuja lamented that the public service was stank of corruption.

Buhari said the situation was worsened by the inability of the service to clearly articulate its mandate, following which it had earned a reputation for inefficiency, low productivity, corruption and insensitivity to the needs of the public it ought to serve with commitment.

Muhammadu Buhari, 2015 president of Nigeria

Muhammadu Buhari, 2015 president of Nigeria

The president also said attempts to revamp the service would require great ingenuity, especially when the ethical values that hitherto formed the crux have been eroded.

He made the observations at the Old Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa in Abuja, yesterday at the launch of a progamme tagged, “Capacity Building Programmes for Public Servants/Structured Mandatory Assessment-based Training Programme (SMAT-P) and Leadership Enhancement And Development Programme (LEAD-P)”.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo represented the president at the occasion.

“Many who mourn the decline of the civil service today from its days as ‘primus inter pares’ in the commonwealth to one which has earned a reputation for inefficiency, low productivity, corruption and insensitivity to the needs of the public fall into the error of thinking that the problem is poverty of ideas and capacity on the part of the civil service,” Buhari lamented.

He said the problem was the inability to clearly articulate a vision and ensure that the service develops the required capacity to articulate and implement the various components of the vision.

Buhari said: “Here, we’re launching capacity building initiatives designed to strengthen the leadership at all levels in the service and build a new performance management system. But the fundamental questions are: ‘What is the ethos, the ethical and ideological world view that the service is to deliver? To what purpose do we deploy leadership skills and for what ends? How can we measure performance when the objective itself is unclear?

‘Without clear answers to these questions, the service will grope in the dark and take the government and people along with it on a blind-leading-the-blind voyage. So, what sort of country do we envision? We want to build a nation with the citizen as its reason for being and thus its sole focus and responsibility. The citizen regardless of status in life must be respected by the governing authorities and treated with dignity.’

“Flowing from these is the imperative that our society must be governed by the rule of law administered by a trustworthy, fearless, impartial and efficient judiciary.”

He noted that the country once again stood on the threshold of greatness if stakeholders involved desired it badly enough to fight for it.

He said the civil service must as a priority see itself as servants and facilitators of commerce and entrepreneurship, designing policies and removing obstacles to doing business in Nigeria.

Charging public servants to cultivate the habit of scoring itself not in enforcing processes and procedures but as to how efficient and expeditious they have enabled businesses to be.

“What are the crucial communications to make to the people in a season requiring sacrifice and perseverance on account of falling revenues or for that matter communicate the position that our anti-corruption, zero tolerance stand, is not merely a moral or ethical stand but a developmental construct that recognises that corruption, if not apprehended, will destroy all institutions, the economy and eventually our society?” he queried.

Comply Or…

Earlier, the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Danladi Kifasi, pointed out that the overall objective of the programmes being launched was to address capacity and leadership challenges in the civil service.

He noted that the programmes were funded mainly from the training budgets of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and delivered by the Nigerian Management Development Institutes.

Kifasi said in the absence of ministers, Buhari had helped to restore the confidence of the civil service by depending on it for support to govern the country.

He further pledged the support of the service to the incumbent administration in its bid to bring about positive and sustainable change in the country.

Kifasi also told the gathering that all Federal Government MDAs had been directed to comply with the instructions on the Treasury Single Account (TSA) by September 15, 2015 or face sanctions.

A circular by Kifasi to the affected agencies noted that a number of MDAs were yet to comply with the directive given on August 7, introducing the TSA, directing that all receipts due to the Federal Government or any of its agencies be paid into the Federal Sub-Treasury Account maintained at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

Government had hinged the implementation of the TSA on the need to aid transparency and facilitate compliance with Sections 80 and 162 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).

According to an Aso Rock statement by presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina, Kifasi had directed through the circular that the MDAs are to ensure strict compliance with the deadline to avoid sanctions.

The circular, with reference number HCSF/428/S.1/125 of September 4, 2015, notes that a number of MDAs are yet to comply with an earlier circular with Reference No. HCSF/428/S.1/120 of August 7, 2015, which conveyed the president’s original directive on the payment of all Federal Government revenue into the TSA.

“In this regard, His Excellency, Mr. President has directed that all MDAs are to comply with the instructions on the Treasury Single Account (TSA) unfailingly by Tuesday, September 15, 2015.

“Heads of MDAs and other arms of Government are enjoined to give this circular the widest circulation and ensure strict compliance to avoid sanctions,” Kifasi wrote.

Conservative estimates show that funds belonging to Federal Government MDAs in the vaults of commercial banks may be in the region of N2 trillion as deposits, all of which would be lost to the (CBN), with the implementation of the TSA.

470 Bank Accounts

Some state governments across the country, including Lagos and Kaduna, have also adopted the TSA system to plug leakages in their finances.

For instance, Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna, said the state under former Governor Mukhtar Yero maintained 470 different accounts.

The deputy governor of the state, Barnabas Bala, made the allegation on Saturday during a town hall meeting at Kafanchan, in Kaura Local Government Area, where he noted that a total of N4 billion was discovered in the 470 accounts operated under different names in 23 commercial banks.

According to him, but for the adoption of the TSA system, nobody would have discovered the accounts or recovered the said money.

The el-Rufai administration, in early August this year, announced the adoption of the TSA and directed all commercial banks with the state funds to remit such (money) to the Central Bank of Nigeria.

Investors’ Confidence

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele, and other top financial professionals, would this morning gather in Abuja for a two-day brainstorming on realistic blue-print to support the Federal Government’s efforts at restoring investor and public confidence in the nation’s economy.

The forum is holding under the auspices of the Ninth Annual Banking and Finance Conference organised by the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) with the theme, “The Financial Services Industry Agenda for a New Nigeria.”

Sub-themes to address specific critical issues in the economy include “The imperative for National Rebirth for Economic Development: The Role of Nigerian Financial Services Sector”; “The Financial Services Sector and Security Challenges in Nigeria”; “Financing Infrastructural Development in the New era”; and “The Financial Services Sector and the Challenge of Corruption in Nigeria.”

High profile experts who would examine issues at the conference include President of the African Development Bank (AfDB) and former Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina; Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase; Chief Executive Officer, Geometric Power and former Minister of Power, Prof. Barth Nnaji; Chairman, ICPC, Ekpo Nta; Executive Director, The Convention on Business Integrity, Soji Apampa; member, Monetary Policy Committee, CBN and Faculty member, Lagos Business School (LBS), Dr. Doyin Salami.

Comments (1)

  • Sep 8, 2015 at 3:50 pm shola

    “that the public service was stank of corruption.“ Please pay them very well, so that they will never be enticed by criminals. It is highly alarming to read in the media that these workers, most especially police officers and other executive organs are not paid their salaries for months. These are not types like the sleeping governor Wike.

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