The Senate committee chairman on public accounts, Senator Matthew Oroghide, representing Edo South, says his committee intends to bring sanity to government agencies, especially regarding their penchant for keeping unaudited accounts. He spoke to JOHN AKUBO in Abuja.
You recently gave a seven-day ultimatum to some government agencies to submit their unaudited accounts. Have they complied?
It is true we gave ultimatum to certain Federal Government agencies. We actually gave them between November 20 and latest 27 to submit what we requested. What we really requested is not audited accounts, as we do not audit agencies’ accounts. The ultimatum was for agencies that do not submit audited accounts to the Auditor General of the federation. It is the Auditor General that scrutinises their audited accounts and then submit such to us. Those agencies are very many. It is statutory for them to get their accounts audited and then sent to the Auditor General.
Then there are accounts that are audited by external auditors. It is not even the Auditor General that audits such accounts. And it is the submission of the external auditors that is sent to the Auditor General, who in turn sends to us as report, and then as a committee, we look at the report, which we now forward to the National Assembly.
But what we are requesting is what is called status enquiry of government agencies. Status enquiry has to do with the agencies’ revenue and expenditure. What did they receive from what sources? Budgetary, extra budgetary and donations, among others. What did they get as revenue? How did they spend it? It is about revenue profile and expenditure profile.