From: Uche Usim, Abuja
The Federal Government realised a whopping N5.244 trillion as at February 10, 2017, since the Treasury Single Account (TSA) domiciled with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) took off about a year ago.
This is as Systemspecs Limited, the firm that developed Remitta, the enabling software for funds remittances to the TSA account at CBN, pleaded with the Federal Government to expedite action in paying its 1% collection fees as enshrined in the agreement with the government.
Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF), Ahmed Idris, who disclosed this, on Tuesday, in Abuja, noted that the scheme has enabled the government to weed out more than 20,000 hitherto multiple banking arrangements and bank accounts spread across various Deposit Money Banks( DMBs).
His words, “This allowed the federal government to have bird’s eye view on all her finances for proper trackings. The TSA has taken us out of the era of indiscriminate borrowings by MDAs and saved government , charges associated with those borrowings which amounted to an average of N4.7 billion monthly prior to full implementation of TSA”, he said.
The AGF, however said, there was need to evaluate the scheme to optimize the gains and address identified areas of challenges.
“You will agree with me that though considerable gains had been made in TSA implementation, there is need to evaluate the programme and identify most feasible ways to take it to the desired level. Furthermore, TSA needs to go beyond mere cash management. We should explore the inherent potential of TSA and identify most economically viable options of resources utilization and deployment particularly under the present economic recession”, AGF said.
Also speaking at the event, the Special Adviser on Economy to the Vice President, Dr. Adeyemi Dipe Olu said the President Muhammadu Buhari administration was deeply committed to allocating resources to key sectors in need of funds, while ensuring revenue leakages are plugged to guarantee transparent cash flow.
He stressed the need to activate TSA scheme beyond federal level down to the states and the local government councils.
” There is need for activation of TSA not only in federal government but both the states and local government levels”, Dipo Olu said.
In his interface with the media after the event, the Managing Director of Systempecs Limited, Mr. John Obaro, described the TSA a good development with excellent value addition.
“For this kind of project and like I said, there would be the initial settling down issues which was exactly what happened. Now things are reasonably settling down, we can begin to speak to the real issue. Before now, there were a lots of peripheral issues. Now we can begin to speak on how to improve operational process , utilization of massive data that is now readily available to the government . This can be used for economic planning and a lots of other things can be derived from what is readily available”.
On unresolved issues and challenges, Obaro said: “Issues about the fees reasonably resolved but not completely resolved . We have effectively not being paid since May last year almost a year . We have not being paid but we believe in what we are doing. We have good cooperation from senior officials of government but we are assured that with the passage of time, this kind of problems would be resolved. And that is why we really don’t want to see it as a big problem . we believe the people are seeing the benefits of the platform we have provided , we would ensure that these issues are resolved in a fair manner”.
The TSA started April 2012 but was truncated due to lack of political will for its implementation. It was however, dusted up by the Buhari administration.