According to the report, this is in line with renewed push by the government to put a check on fleecing revenue especially by revenue generating agencies. The report also revealed that the evaluation and grading department officers of the National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission are currently on the field for the assignment.
A top officer in the commission was quoted as saying, “Our evaluation and grading officers are currently out there on the field for the purpose. “In the past, we extended invitation to some of these agencies, of recent was the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), but it never responded. “The team out there is expected to return to the office this week and submit their report to the chairman, who will study it and make recommendations to the Federal government.” When contacted, the public relations officer at the commission, Mr Williams B. Danbaki, confirmed the development but declined further explanation.
A top officer with the ministry of finance also confirmed that representatives of the Wages Commission would be included in fund recovery committee announced by the minister of finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun.
The officer who spoke under the condition of anonymity, said the federal government was not happy that some revenue generating agencies had been consuming 85 per cent of their revenue surplus as salary and overheads while they persistently declare operating losses in their statements of account.
His words: “The minister has decided to integrate the representatives of National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission in the committee headed by the Accountant General of the Federation to probe and recover unremitted revenue surplus in custody of MDAs.
“Recall that the issue of bogus salaries by some agencies such as Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), NDIC, NIMASA, NPA, CBN, and very numerous other agencies came up at certain time in the era of previous governments and income and wages commission was to come up with an acceptable salary scale for these agencies, but the work was abandoned.
“The current reality and short-changing government of its enormous revenue by revenue generating agencies call for a revisit of salary template for agencies.”
Two weeks ago, the Fiscal Responsibility Commission raised the alarm that revenue generating agencies were short-changing government by declaring operating losses in their statements of account. The commission alleged that revenue agencies withheld operating surplus meant for transfer to the Consolidated Revenue Account and deployed same into funding over bloated salaries and overheads. Some of the ways in which the federal government agencies incur huge expenses are:
1. Overseas training and medicals
2. Expenses on behalf of supervisory ministries and/other organs of government involved in oversight or regulatory functions without appropriate approval
3. Payment of salaries and allowances to staff and board members, governing councils, and commissions, which are outside or above the amount approved by the Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Allocation Commission (RMFAC) and the National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission.
6. Unfavourable contract signed for revenue collection by third party
7. Granting of staff loans that have not been repaid and
8. Sale and transfer of assets to board members, among others.
According to the ministry of finance, the overall effect of these practices is that operating surpluses of these agencies are lower than should be. Meanwhile, the Nigerian economy shrank to 2.2% for the third quarter of the year according to a report published by the National Bureau of Statistics on its website today, November 21.
The report shows that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Quarter 3 of 2016 contracted by 2.24%, relative to 2.06% in Quarter 2 and 0.36% in Quarter 1.