Uche Usim, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday ordered the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation (OAGF) to commence daily publishing of all government income and expenses in order to let Nigerians into the workings of government.
Speaking at the launch of the Federal Government Financial Transparency Policy (FTP) and portal in Abuja, President Buhari who was represented by the Minister of State, Niger Delta, Mr Tayo Donald Alasoadura said; “the transparency policy approved by the Federal Executive Council requires that the AGF must publish a daily treasury statement, which will provide information about what came into the national purse and what went out every single day. I repeat every single day. Henceforth, treasury (OAGF) is required to publish this information unfailingly”.
President Buhari further directed that the AGF and all accounting officers of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) must publish daily payments reports.
“With these reports, the Treasury will publish payments of at least N10 million, while all MDAs must publish payments above N5 million made out of all public funds under their
“The information to be published must include the MDA responsible, the beneficiary, the purpose and amount of each payment accounting officers are responsible for providing answers to any questions from the public relating to transactions completed by entities under their charge. All MDAs must publish monthly budget performance reports. These reports must include performance of the budget by various dimensions including MDAs, functions and economic activities performed by all federal government agencies.
“These reports must be ready within seven days after the end of the month. The AGF must publish monthly fiscal accounts detailing fiscal performance of the federation including receipts from all the collection agencies and payments out of the federation account.
“This must be done within 14 days after the end of the month. The AGF and all accounting officers of MDAs must publish quarterly financial statements for government as a whole and for individual MDAs respectively.
“These must be published within a month after the end of the quarter. The AGF must publish annual general purpose financial statements
while all public sector entities are required to publish statements for
their individual entities. These statements must be prepared
following international public sector accounting standards and must
be ready within a month after the end of the first quarter of the
following year”, he added.
While acknowledging that the requirements needed to ensure total compliance to the new rule might be a tall order, the President said systems, which have already been built to support the policy are robust and sufficient.
He added: “The next level of our reform efforts require it. Nigerians need it and all accounting officers must comply”.
He noted that the new policy has to be implemented in order to achieve a plethora of objectives such as; cementing government commitment to improving governance and
supplementing the recently launched Whistle-blower policy and
equipping the general population with the tools they need to report
“The government has committed to
full implementation of the Freedom of Information Act 2014 so that
government-held data-sets can be availed and used by the media and
the public at large. This policy is in fulfilment of my promise to Nigerians
in an effort to build public trust in government”.
Another objective is facilitating the fight against corruption through partnership building, saying it is crucial that more transparency is not only encouraged but also
enforced at all levels.
“This policy is also aimed at enabling timely availability of financial information to the civil society organizations and the public at large by all MDAs of the Federal Government.
“Through this initiative, the foundation for a strong partnership against corruption will
“Another objective is setting the minimum requirements for financial transparency by all MDAs. While full and complete disclosure should be encouraged, a minimum needs to be set to ensure that non-compliance can be established and addressed. I encourage MDAs to publish even more. Setting deadlines and allocation of responsibility for financial
“In addition to the responsibility for publication outlined above, all MDAs are required to promptly respond to additional requests for information beyond what is published.
“Given these initiatives, public officers should act in awareness of the reality that information about their fiduciary responsibilities and actions will be easily accessed by not only law enforcement agencies but also the general public.
“For contractors and other service providers to government agencies,
take note that any payment you receive from the public purse will be
published. Ensure you collect public money for legitimate purposes for if not, it will not take long before it is known.
“We have recorded significant milestones including the roll out of the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS) to over 800 Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAS), which has enabled us to build a very rich repository of financial information about the affairs of the Federal Government. Within government, we know who is collecting what revenue and who is getting paid which money and for what purpose. This information is available online real-time, but only to a limited number of privileged government officials. This has to change and now does.
“I urge all the States and Local Governments to embrace
transparency as a vehicle through which fiscal discipline can be entrenched for the benefit of generations to come. www.opentreasury.gov.ng is hereby
opened for all MDAs to publish all the information required by the policy and for immediate access by all Nigerians”, he added.
In his remarks at the event, the AGF, Mr Ahmed Idris assured the President that his office will ensure total compliance to the directives, as they will deepen transparency.
He said: “The OAuGF is set to implement all these directives and no stone will be left unturned in achieving the mandate of the open treasury initiative.
“Under my watch, we will uphold public financial management and carry out our oversight on MDAs.
We thank the finance minister who always approved our request for new initiatives on public financial management. The enrollment of government agencies of IPPIS has become a booster in deepening transparency in public finance. This will put government’s agencies on their toes”, he said.
Ahmed also revealed that an inter-ministerial monitoring committee for the new policy has been constituted to ensure smooth and total implementation.
He added that the portal came at no cost to the government assistance the entire project was conceived and executed by the in-house staff.