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Niger MDAs exposed for engaging in widespread financial malpractices

Written by on March 17, 2021

Ministries, Departments and Agencies in Niger state have been exposed for engaging in widespread financial malpractices and extra-budgetary expenses.

The Nation gathered that such malpractices include issuing payment vouchers without supporting documents, having outstanding payment vouchers at the end of the day, under-collection of revenues from MDAs, store items not taken on charge and discrepancies of salaries.

Other malpractices include discrepancies in salaries, purchase and repairs without receipts, unauthorized expenditure, payment without expenditure details, payment vouchers not posted into cash books, revenue receipts not posted into cash books and weak Internal Control mechanism.

These malpractices and extra-budgetary expenses were contained in the report of the Niger state Auditor General on the accounts of the government of Niger state for the year ended 31st December 2019.

The report was sent to the state House of Assembly whose Committee on Public Accounts for a recommendation.

The Auditor General’s report also notes that the majority of the MDAs do not have e-mail addresses and thus, they do not respond to the queries of the Auditor-General.

The House Committee Chairman on Public Accounts, Honorable Yahaya Abdullahi representing Agaie Constituency noted that the report covers real issues involving major Ministries, Department and Agencies adding that the issues discovered are such that can affect the image of the state government before the public because of the quantum of fund involved.

“Officers controlling expenditure do not take seriously the use of vote book, a memorandum accounts book used for monitoring government expenditure, and hence the occurrence of extra-budgetary spending or misclassification of expenditure,” he stated.

The Committee further said that the activities and practices of the MDAs could affect transparency and accountability in governance adding that additional observations contained under the Appropriation Audit revealed that the MDAs are loaded with negligence to adherence to financial instructions.

The Committee then recommended that any MDAs discovered to be engaged in extra-budgetary expenses and financial malpractices will be denied their overhead allowances for a certain period.

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