Uche Usim, Abuja
The Accountant-General of the Federation, Mr Idris Ahmed on Tuesday explained that all disbursements of all COVID-19 funds, including those being collected directly by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and those domiciled with commercial banks shall only be through appropriation.
The AGF who made the disclosure in a statement, however noted that the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning may liaise with the National Assembly for emergency passage of a supplementary budget for the utilization of COVID-19 donation based on estimated total collection for the year.
He said: “Funds are to be appropriated directly to participating MDA and spending units like Ministry of Health, Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, etc rather than to an intermediary agency like the Presidential Task Force (PTF). Administrative cost of the PTF shall be appropriated separately to the PTF Secretariat.
“The advantage is that the respective spending units and their Accounting
Officers take full responsibility for funds appropriated to them and likely
bottlenecks at the PTF are eliminated.
“Furthermore, transparency is enhanced when funds are spread to more MDA than when a huge amount is put under the control of a single entity”, he said.
Ahmed added that to ensure equity and transparency in fund allocation, the Finance Minister may work with the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 to determine the needs of participating MDA such as
Health, Humanitarian Affairs, NCDC, etc.
Affected MDA, he stressed, shall present details of their needs together with estimated
This will form the basis for allocation of funds and enables post
expenditure reporting and audit. Funds are to be transferred to TSA Sub-Accounts of spending units based on approved allocations.
“For collection of donations and disbursements therefrom, a new line for COVID-19 donations under fund source segment is to be added to the
chart of accounts. This will make it possible for all receipts and payments relating to COVID 19 Fund to be uniquely tracked and reported.
“If funds are to be disbursed based on NASS appropriation, then all
payments are to be effected using GIFMIS. Where the extra-budgetary option applies, MDA shall spend using the REMITA platform
“In all cases; extant laws, rules and regulations including those relating to
Public Procurement Act (subject to the guidance of the Bureau for Public
Procurement) shall apply”, he added.