Home Finance Corruption, financial impunity gradually fading — FG

Corruption, financial impunity gradually fading — FG


The Fiscal Responsibility Commission (FRC) chairman, Victor Muruako has said the culture of financial impunity is gradually becoming a thing of the past in Nigeria.

Mr Muruako said this during a courtesy visit by the Nigerian Economics Students’ Association (NESA), University of Nigeria, Nsukka, to the commission on Friday in Abuja.

He said FRC, set up by the Fiscal Responsibility Act No. 31 of 2007 and started operations in 2009, had made several strides since its inception.

“We have indeed made some landmark achievements from when we first began as a commission to where we are today. First and foremost, the culture of impunity is definitely disappearing, and people are becoming more responsible,” said Mr Muruako.

The FRC chair added, “Although corruption cannot just evaporate like that, but you can see today that, unlike before, people are now being held accountable for whatever they do.”

According to him, in terms of budget implementation, the situation was far better than what was obtained before now.

“In the past, Mr President would just release his budget speech few days to the end of the year, and that is it. But now, with the Act and the commission, as well as our engagements with the relevant stakeholders, including the Ministry of Finance, Budget and Planning, we now have a series of activities that will definitely lead to the national appropriation,” the FRC chief explained.

Mr Muruako added, “Like the engagement with civil society groups, the medium-term expenditure framework, the public hearings that are carried out and a lot of other processes.”

The FRC chairman said all these were definite steps towards planning so that the national budget was no longer how it used to be, which has led to gains.

“There must be absolute planning because if you fail to plan, then you have already planned to fail,” he said.

Mr Muruako explained that the ability of the commission to come up with the template for the calculation of operating surplus, which was quite acceptable, had yielded huge revenue.

“Earnings to the consolidated revenue funds of the Federal Government have greatly increased. I can tell you that year upon year, we have continued to improve in that area,” stressed the FRC chief. “We have been working in collaboration with other stakeholders, particularly the National Assembly, the Office of the Budget of the Federation, the Ministry of Finance and the Accountant General of the Federation.”

He added, “So if you check the quantum. For the first time in 2021, the independent revenue of the Federal Government was able to hit the trillion mark. This can obviously be traced to a lot of activities by the commission, and we are still counting.”

Mr Muruako also mentioned the need to continuously embark on youth sensitisation to help instil the culture of fiscal discipline in the lives of young citizens.

“This is because one of the problems we identified with issues of instilling fiscal discipline in public officials is that it is very difficult to change adults as bad habits die very hard,” Mr Muruako said. “So, we at the commission felt that one of our key strategies is to reach out to the leaders of tomorrow, who are the public-officials-to-be. We want to catch them young while they are still at that early stage, and we started this by setting up what we call the ‘Army of Fiscal Responsibility Enthusiasts’.”


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