The Senate has raised the alarm that with the low revenue that accrues to the Federation Account of the country, over 400 out of 541 Federal Government owned Ministries, Departments and Agencies ( MDAs) should be scrapped in consonance with the recommendations of Stephen Orosanye led Presidential Committee on rationalization of agencies.
According to the Senate, revenue generation is the most critical factor being considered by the Federal Government to decide the 106 MDAs to be retained and over 400 others to be scrapped.
Speaking on Wednesday in Abuja at the second day of the ongoing interface between the Committee and heads of MDAs on revenue drive for the implementation of proposed N19.76trillion 2023 budget, Chairman, Senate Committee on Finance Senator Olamilekan Adeola, (APC, Lagos West), said that Orosanye panel recommended retention of 106 of the MDAs .
The imminent scrapping of low revenue generating MDAs by the Federal Government as declared by Senator Adeola reared its when the Director General of National Biosafety Management Agency ( NBMA) , Dr Rufus Ebegba made presentation of low revenue generation by the agency to the committee .
In his presentation, the DG explained that only N2million has been generated by NBMA this year as against N5million it usually generates on yearly basis and that, out of the N2 .5billion appropriated for capital budget this year, only N1.3billion has been released.
Not happy with poor revenue generation , Senator Adeola who told the Biosafety Management Agency boss, that it was unacceptable for an agency spending N500million a year outside capital projects to be remitting N5milllion into government coffers, declared that the time for such low revenue generation by any government agency was over as those not meeting up, will be scrapped as recommended by the Orosanye panel .
Senator Adeola said, “There is no way in stopping the implementation of Orosanye panel because of economic situation at hand in the country. Government needs revenue for impactful budget implementation, particularly in the area of projects execution and can no longer afford to be dolling money to MDAs without corresponding returns on yearly basis.
“We in the Senate are in support of implementation of the Orosanye led panel report to save the economy from self – inflicted bleeding,” he said.
The committee members further got annoyed when the Managing Director of Sokoto Rima River Basin Development Authority ( SRRBDA), Engineer Buhari Bature Mohammed said that out of the N7billion collected from government as funding for year 2022, only N7million revenue has been generated.
At the end of the day, the Committee declared that Orosanye report should be applied on agencies with yearly low revenue generation.
The Committee through Adeola also threatened zero budget allocation in year 2023 for any agency whose accounting officer refused to honour the ongoing interface on revenue generation.
The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele and the ]Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited, Mele Kyari failed to appear before the committee as directed on Tuesday by the Chairman. (Vanguard)