We Are Succeeding In Cleaning PDP’s Rots, Plundering – FG

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has stated at a media briefing on Sunday that the Federal Government is succeeding in the “tough” task of cleaning up the rots, looting, impunity and plundering of the nation’s economy, perpetrated by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

He said “Our commonwealth was looted with impunity by the same people who now say they want to come back.

“Indeed, it will not just be a tragedy, but a double tragedy, if we ever allow these same people to preside over our commonwealth.

“Where do we start? Do we want a Diezani back as Petroleum Minister, after the recovery of at least 43 million dollars and 56 houses from this one person?

“Do we want the 2.9 billion dollars that has been successfully traced and recovered from looters by the EFCC since the inauguration of the present administration, to be re-looted?

“What about the 151 million dollars and N8 billion in looted funds that have been recovered from just three sources as a direct result of the introduction of the whistle-blower policy?

“As the pace of politics gradually picks up ahead of 2019, it is important that we let Nigerians know the enormous progress that the Buhari administration has made in just a little over two years.

“It is a mark of the contempt in which the PDP holds Nigerians that the party is even talking of returning to power, even when the rot it left behind is yet to be totally cleared.

“Never again must Nigeria be bedeviled by a rapacious, impunity-prone and plunderous party like the PDP.”

Specifically, the minister said that with the enforcement of Treasury Single Account (TSA) policy, N3 trillion had accrued to government purse, having successfully removed the N108 billion in maintenance fees payable to banks, pre-TSA and monthly saving of N24.7 billion.

The minister said that N120 billion had also been saved with the elimination of thousands of ghost workers in the system.

Mohammed also shared an example of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), which only remitted about N51 million under PDP, whereas in September 2017, the same JAMB announced it was ready to remit N7.8 billion.

TSA: Kwara Bags NIBSS Outstanding Performance Award For Cashless Transactions

The Kwara state Government on Thursday won an award for Outstanding Performance as Cashless Driver in the Government Category at the maiden Electronic Payments Incentive Scheme(EPIS) Efficiency Award 2016, held in Lagos.

Kwara was one of the only two states that received recognition in the government category alongside Lagos State,  Federal Inland Revenue Service(FIRS) and the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation.

According to the organizers, the award is for the government’s outstanding performance in driving the CBN Cashless Initiative through NIBSS Electronic Platform for the year 2015.

Kwara State’s Cashless Initiatives which earned it the award include salary administration, TSA implementation and the technology deployed for the state revenue agency, Kwara State Internal Revenue Service.(KWIRS)

Reacting to the award, Kwara State Governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed, said the his administration will continue to enhance its use of technology for efficiency, transparency and cost savings. He said KWIRS recognition by EPIS in less than a year of operation demonstrates that the state is well on the way to achieving its target of becoming the state with the second highest IGR per capita income by 2019.

Governor Ahmed said the state will continue to partner with the CBN in its drive for financial inclusion for SMEs and micro industry and will strive to remain at the forefront of innovation using available electronic platforms.

The governor thanked all stakeholders and partners and called on them to continue to work with the state on innovation that will enhance our collective economic development.

Senate Moves Against TSA

The Senate on Wednesday asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to terminate forthwith the 2013 e-payment contract renewal with SystemSpecs.

The upper chamber also ordered the CBN to disregard the one per cent charge provided in the contract agreement with SystemSpecs.

As part of its contract with SystemSpecs, the apex bank agreed on the deduction of one per cent charge on all e-collections by SystemSpecs operator of REMITA Platform.

This is part of 11- point recommendations made by the Senate Joint Committee on Finance, Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions and Public Accounts.

The Senate in plenary adopted the recommendations as presented by Chairman of the Joint Committee, Senator John Owan Enoh.

The submission of the committee was however not debated as Senate President, Bukola Saraki, ruled that only the recommendations of the committee would be considered.

The Senate had, during its sitting on November 11, 2015, debated a motion on alleged “abuse and mismanagement of the Treasury Single Account (TSA).

The upper chamber resolved to, among others, mandate its Joint committee on Finance, Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions and Public Accounts to conduct holistic investigation on the matter.

It specifically mandated the committee to investigate the alleged abuse of the TSA and deduction of N25 billion from accounts of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) under the e-payment.

The Nation

CBN Unveils Guidelines For Operation Of TSA By States

As state governments continue to face intense pressure on their cash flows in the face of dwindling revenues and the need to meet increasing statutory and social responsibilities, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has released the guidelines for the implementation of treasury single account (TSA) by states.

The TSA, according to the CBN, would be a major component of financial and treasury management reforms being undertaken by the states.

The new circular posted on the central bank’s website yesterday, explained that the central bank introduced the guidelines for states in exercise of its powers, as provided in the CBN Act, 2007, Section 47, sub section 2(2d).

“The objective of this guideline is to provide state governments with a clear framework to support their successful implementation of the TSA initiative, based on standardised banking arrangements, operational processes and IT infrastructure,” it added.

Part of the essential requirements for operating the TSA by states is that government agencies are not to operate any bank account under any guise, outside the purview and oversight of the treasury.

In addition, the central bank explained that under the policy, the consolidation of government cash resources should be comprehensive and encompass all government cash resources, both budgetary and extra-budgetary.

The banking sector regulator listed the two TSA models to include: (The main TSA and associated ledger sub-accounts (where they exist) are to be maintained in a single banking institution; or the main TSA maintained in a single banking institution and associated zero balance ledger sub-accounts (ZBAs) (where they exist) are maintained in other institutions from where balances are swept daily to the main TSA in CBN or the appointed main TSA hosting financial institution.

“Each state government shall select any TSA model of its choice. The choice of a TSA model shall be informed and guided by the availability of clear operational processes and basic technology infrastructure that supports the implementation of the model of choice.

“Each state government shall inform the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria of its decision to introduce the TSA scheme, detailing; the state’s preferred TSA model (banking structure) and level of preparedness to commence, operate & support the scheme, which shall include, but not limited to project organisation and resourcing, operational process workflow, available technology infrastructure, etc.

“Each state government shall maintain contractual agreement(s) with parties involved in the design, delivery and ongoing support of its TSA scheme. Such Agreement shall clearly define the terms and the roles and responsibilities of the state government and the relevant parties,” it added.

Thisday

TSA Concept, Design And Benefits, By Kemi Adeosun

It is my singular honour and great pleasure to give this keynote address at the opening ceremony of this workshop on TSA concept, design, benefits and to share experiences of the Federal and States Government in the implementation of the project.
This workshop is expected to dwell further on current issues and challenges surrounding Cash Flow Management with a view to ensure scarce resources at the disposal of Federal, State and Local Governments are prudently and efficiently managed.

The organisation of this workshop is therefore, apt and timely especially at a time when the global economic downturn is creating challenges that demand efficient and effective management of cash resources.

The global economic challenges which are affecting our nation demand optimum efficiency in the management of public funds. These objectives require an overhaul of the financial management approaches adopted to meet financial obligations on time and ensure that cost effective financial support is provided to public institutions
Much has been reported and debated about the merits of TSA and the impact on the financial autonomy of the various arms of government and on the profitability of commercial banks. In practice, TSA is an essential reform for any government wishing to pursue fiscal sustainability and prudent management of its resources.

It increases accountability and transparency, improves the processing of payments and collections and reduces borrowing costs,

It is worth reiterating some of the key benefits of TSA that we have recorded to date:

• TSA at Federal Level has allowed, for the first time, visibility of the total quantity of government funds at any point in time.

• The balance, which changes daily as MDA’s remit revenues and make payments, according to the latest reports from CBN exceeds N2.2 Trillion. I can report that work is now ongoing within The Treasury, to determine how much of these funds can potentially be utilised to part fund the 2016 budget and how much relates to pending commitments. This, of course, will reduce the amount to be borrowed

• The TSA has provided us with financial information on the revenues of agencies funded by government and has reduced revenue suppression. This information is being used to drive our programme to enforce compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act and ensure that Revenue Generating Agencies generate expected surpluses and remit to the Federal Purse.

• TSA has eliminated opportunities for brokerage and other corrupt practices that previously encouraged agencies to accumulate funds with commercial banks rather than apply them to their intended uses. We believe that this will reduce payment delays to contractors, minimise late payment penalties and will consequently improve project completion times and service delivery.

• TSA has corrected the practice of government borrowing short term funds at high rates of interest, whilst simultaneously having idle funds in various bank accounts.

• By reducing the number of accounts in operation, monitoring and control has significantly improved.

I, therefore, urge the participants for this workshop to also discuss and brainstorm on ways and means of improving the revenue base of the country through full implementation of TSA and blocking of all leakages and improving the efficiency of revenue administration. The revenue base of the Country is still low and its administration still leaves room for improvement. This is bedevilled with a range of problems such as poor computerization, lack of skilled and dedicated employees, corruption, lack of awareness and of course unpatriotic conduct by some of the operators. This clearly indicates that the underlying assumptions underpinning the 2016 budget may only be realised with serious efforts put in place towards revenue efficiencies and expenditure discipline such as implementation of the TSA and Cash Management concepts by all tiers of government.

Therefore, I commend the efforts of the OAGF and organisers for hosting this very important workshop aimed at sensitizing the States Accountants-General on the need to key into the Treasury Single Account scheme of the Federal Government. I also wish to thank IMF (FAD Mission) for partnering with Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) in this noble initiative. I may also emphasis that timing of this workshop cannot be more auspicious than now when the present Administration of His Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is vigorously pursuing the war against corruption.

As professionals in charge of Public Financial Management of your respective states, the ball is in your court and l hope you will take advantage of this workshop to clarify issues that have agitated your minds regarding the implementation of TSA. TSA will no doubt enables you to block all financial leakages and conserve more funds needed for development in your various States.
I am also aware that some states are already implementing TSA. I urge those states to kindly share their experiences with the rest of you so as to encourage those who are yet to decide to take their first step in this direction.

At the Federal Level, I can assure you that our experience has been worthwhile. TSA has Provided complete and timely information on government cash resources, Improved operational control on budget execution, Enabled efficient cash management, Reduced bank fees and transaction costs, Facilitated efficient payment mechanisms and it has also reduced the FGN Ways and Means requirement to bridge the budget funding gap.
Distinguished invited guests, participants, ladies and gentlemen. I have gone through the topics for discussion and the names of the distinguished speakers. It is remarkable that this initiative will come-up with ways of improving the efficiency of our scarce resources. I urge all participants to interact freely and share ideas that would improve transparency and accountability in the management of our nation’s scares resources. On this note, distinguished participants, ladies and gentlemen, I hereby declare this Workshop opened. I wish you fruitful deliberations.
Thank you and God bless.

Being text of an address by Finance Minister, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, on the occasion of a Treasury Single Account (TSA) workshop for states’ Accountants-General held in Abuja.

TSA Hits N2.3trn With 98% Compliance By MDAs

… FG, IMF Urge States To Adopt System
The Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation (OAGF), yesterday said it has mopped up N2.3 trillion  into the Treasury Single Account (TSA).

Its Director of Funds, Mr. Mohammed Dikwa, disclosed this at the opening session of the workshop on TSA in Abuja.

He said with over  17,000 bank accounts being operated at the federal level in commercial banks, government had no choice but to introduce the TSA which has so far helped in mopping up about N2.3trillion into the various accounts maintained and operated at the  Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

In similar vein, the Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF), Mr.Alhaji Ahmed Idris, said 98 per cent of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) have complied with the TSA.

He said following government’s February last year directive, all federal MDAs are now on TSA operating their account successfully through the CBN.

Idris said: “As at December 2015, 726 MDAs, which are responsible for almost 98 per cent of the national budget have complied fully.”

According to him, the challenges encountered in the adoption of the TSA were entrenched resistance from banks and the MDAs, which the Federal Government has now overcome.

With the massive compliance, the AGF noted, the new challenge is that of capacity building , and the application of information technology (IT).

In her opening remarks, the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, who was represented by Mr. Adeseye Shefuye said the  balance, which changes daily as MDAs remit revenues and make payments, according to the latest reports from CBN exceeded N2.2 Trillion.

She said: “I can report that work is now ongoing within the Treasury, to determine how much of these funds can potentially be utilised to part fund the 2016 budget and how much relates to pending commitments. This, of course, will reduce the amount to be borrowed.”

TSA, she said,  has provided government with financial information on the revenues of agencies funded by government and has reduced revenue suppression.

She noted that the information is being used to drive government’s programme to enforce compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act and ensure that revenue generating agencies generate expected surpluses and remit to the Federation Account.

Mrs Adeosun said: “TSA has eliminated opportunities for brokerage and other corrupt practices that previously encouraged agencies to accumulate funds with commercial banks rather than apply them to their intended uses.