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  • Updated: April 13, 2024

Senate to investigate 774 federal agencies

Senate to investigate 774 federal agencies

Senator Aliyu Wadada, Chairman of the Senate Public Account Committee (SPAC), has affirmed the Senate's commitment to investigating the financial records of 774 federal agencies based on queries raised against them in the 2019 report of the Auditor General for the Federation.

He emphasised that the objective is to promote fiscal discipline rather than engage in a witch hunt.

Senator Wadada also disclosed plans to amend the 2007 Procurement Act with the support of the Presidency to address financial mismanagement effectively.

He highlighted the importance of appointing a substantive Auditor General for the Federation (AuGF) and expressed appreciation for President Tinubu's response to the request for the appointment.

He mentioned the availability, responsiveness, and support of the Presidency under President Tinubu's leadership towards the committee on public accounts in the National Assembly.

Senator Wadada emphasized that the primary focus of the committee is to ensure transparency and accountability in the management of public funds.

He clarified that the committee's aim is not to witch-hunt individuals but to identify past shortcomings, prevent their recurrence, and enhance financial accountability.

He said: "When I became the Chairman, Senate Public Account Committee (SPAC), I was emphatic on the need for President Bola Tinubu to appoint the substantive Auditor General for the Federation (AuGF).

"I even wrote a letter to that effect to the President and he responded by appointing a substantive Auditor General for the Federation (AuGF).

"The AuGF report for the 2020, 2021, 2022 fiscal years were not all ready. It was only the 2019 Auditor General's report that was then ready for us to take actions on.

"The Auditor General's report for 2020 was ready at the time I became the Senate Public Account Committee but it could not be signed by the acting Auditor General for the Federation.

"As we talk, the 2020 Auditor General's report is ready and the substantive AuGF has appended his signature to it.

"The development is a confirmation that the Presidency under the stewardship of President Bola Tinubu is available, is responsive and supportive of the committee on public accounts in the two chambers of the National Assembly.

"We have since started work on the 2019 Auditor General's report before us.

"Under my chairmanship of this sensitive and strategic committee, I have repeatedly said it that we are not out to witch-hunt or pull down anybody.

"Our ultimate objective vis-a-vis the primary focus of the committee is to ensure transparency and accountability in the management of public funds.

"All we are out for, is to identify what went wrong in the past, how they went wrong? Going forward, what measure do we take to forestall their reoccurrence? That's all.

"I have been quiet about the activities of the committee because the sensitive nature of our assignment does not permit us to be talking anyhow.

"If we talk about or say everything we see in the reports of the Auditor General, we might end up setting the citizens against the government.

"So many things are wrong, not only because of corruption per se, some are systemic in nature.

"What we have in most cases is garbage in and garbage out. If financial reports are not well documented to produce the required results in an audit, that means something would go wrong.

"We are seriously working on the assignment before us. So far, some level of achievements had been recorded and we are still engaging with heads of ministries, departments and agencies of the Federal Government.

"They are still appearing before our committee to answer the queries they have against them as far as the 2019 Auditor General's report is concerned. That's the situation at the moment.

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