Government seeks for ANAN’s support in corruption fight
The Federal Government has solicited the support of the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN) and its affiliated professionals in the fight against corruption in the country.
President Muhammadu Buhari, who made the call in Abuja, at the 21st yearly conference of ANAN, however said the ongoing fight against corruption is not about retribution and meting out punishment, the association said in a statement.
The President, represented by the Accountant-General of the Federation, Alhaji Ahmed Idris, said: “I urge you to join in the current fight against corruption and be professionally at forefront in our quest for efficient public finance management and real economic growth. It is about getting back looted funds for our economic recovery and growth.
“Systemic fraud needs to be checked and accountants should have the first line of detection through systems and processes. The objective is not just to stem corruption but to execute an economic plan to channel those resources into much-needed areas that will support and reposition the economy.
He said the theme of the conference: “Nigeria’s Economic Management: Accountant’s Perspective”, is of great relevance and commended their efforts at addressing current issues from their perspective.
“While we are regaled with and shocked by details of amounts stolen, diverted or wasted, we must face the cold reality that such acts are facilitated by weaknesses in our systems.
“We will no longer measure performance by the size of our budget or the amount disbursed. We must measure the budget by its impact on the lives of Nigerians,” he said.
He said that the on-going audits on revenue remittance by the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) for example, had identified significant cases of non-compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act.
“The TSA initiative has proved its worth in the sense that we have significantly blocked leakages in the system; considerably reduced cost of borrowing by MDAs; and above all, improved inflow of revenue to government.
“We are refocusing savings from recurrent expenditures on capital projects. So far, we have released over N700 billion in capital. We are beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Our salary bill is already going down and our recurrent expenditure is far more controlled than it was,” he added.
The President of ANAN, Anthony Nzom, advised the Federal Government to ensure that the recovered looted funds are effectively redistributed to all sectors of the economy and citizenry to alleviate economic hardship.
He commended the Federal Government’s strides in tackling the abuse of public office are highly commendable coupled with the recovery of looted funds.
“The signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the government of Nigeria and the United Kingdom on the modalities for the return of stolen assets will help instil discipline and decency in public officers’ conduct.
“The economic realities of the present time calls for critical evaluation of the past and present as means of pursuing future goals and aspirations to create a sustainable economic pathways for a developing nation like ours.
“As the nation battles with the realities of economic recession, it is logical that a pragmatic plan is carefully designed in addressing them.