By Tony Obiechina
The Accountant –General of the Federation (AGF), Mr. Ahmed Idris has has warned Government MDAs to stop rejecting Treasury Staff posted to them or be ready to face the consequences of their actions.
He said henceforth any MDA which continues to indulge in such habit will among other punitive measures be denied access to the public payment platform manned by the Office of the AGF.
Mr. Idris handed down the warning when he recieved in audience the managment team of the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure, (NASENI) lead by the Acting Executive Vice Chiarman/ Chief Executive, Dr. Aliyu Maje Adanan in Abuja.
He wondered why some Agencies, who rely on the Accountant General of the Federation for releases of funds to implement their plans and programmes will in turn reject Treasury officers sent to them to help them manage their finances effectively.
“The office of the Accountant-General of the Federation has been vested with the mandate of handling all payments and reciepts on behalf of Government. It should be noted that Treasury Staff have been specially trained and equipped to perform these functions in MDAs inline with Financial Regulations and extant rules” the AGF maintains.
Furthermore, Mr Idris said “the principle of transparency and accountability, which this administration stands for must be seen in practical terms and in line with international best practices. Accordingly, these principles do not allow one to be a judge in his own case. It is the role of Treasury officers to manage the Finance and Accounts Departments as well as the Internal Audit Units in MDAs. As long as you recieve public funds from government, you must allow the Treasury officers to manage operations of the system and application of the funds” he emphasized.
The AGF further explained that Internal Auditors are sent to MDAs to ensure that funds are spent inline with laid down procedures and due processes stressing ability of the Internal Auditor to perform his function as expected is predicted on his independence.
He added that “ the Auditor cannot be said to be independent when he is employed by and paid by the same organisation, and this leads to compromise”.
He called on Heads/ Chief Executives of Government Agencies who do not have Treasury officers manning their Accounts and Internal Audit functions to reconsider their position and come forward to the Treasury for deployment of trained officers to manage their Accounts and Internal Audit departments in line with international best practices.
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