The commitment and resolve of the 8th Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, to work with and support the Executive arm in its effort to improve the life of our people is not negotiable. We are together with the executive on the need to curb waste and plug all loopholes in our revenue and expenditure streams. We are equally concerned and are exploring ways of shoring up the national revenues in spite of the persistent fall in the oil price in the international market. We embrace these challenges as we believe that it will more than anything enable us to think outside of the box to draw up innovative solutions that would strengthen our institutions and the economy at large.

We gladly note the steps already taken by Mr. President to move the country towards efficiency and away from the business as usual mindset through reduction in wasteful expenditures. One of such bold steps is the full pursuit and implementation of the Economic Reform Governance Project (ERGP), which has as its core objective the modernization of Public Finance Management (PFM).

The wholesome adoption of the PFM is in line with the globally accepted Government Integrated Financial Management Information Systems (GIFMIS), which is aimed at plugging revenue wastes. All these are supportive of the introduction and the enforcement of the Treasury Single Account (TSA), which has been fully authorised by the President.

However, it has been brought to the attention of the National Assembly that these laudable goals of TSA could be threatened by the mismanagement and non compliance of extant laws leading to massive abuse such that demand the necessary intervention of the Senate.

The Senate has a critical public role to play to ensure that no such abuse is allowed to fester, hence this public hearing to investigate the purported “Abuse and Mismanagement of Single Treasury Account (TSA) Regime”. This is highly critical and relevant at this stage when we are desirous of entrenching efficiency as a hallmark of the APC government.

Distinguished colleagues, I need not reiterate that the assignment before this joint committee is indeed vital to the success or failure of TSA project. This Senate will like to remind you to act without fear or favour, let or hindrance but to do your utmost to ensure that this investigation is thorough and just.

Your mandate is simple, to investigate and report the entire process culminating in the adoption, remuneration and otherwise of TSA including determining the cost of such project. I expect you to roll up your sleeves and work diligently to unravel the facts and make your recommendations. I urge all who will be attending as witnesses to please furnish the Joint Committee with verifiable facts and documents that will assist in resolving this investigation.

Finally let me reiterate that our goal is in tandem with that of the Executive; to stamp out corruption and expose mismanagement of public resources. We are not going to treat matters bordering on the wellbeing of our economy with kid gloves we simply cannot afford it.

I wish you all a successful outcome on this deliberation.

I hereby declare the investigative Public Hearing open

*** This keynote address was delivered by the President of the Senate of Nigeria, Senator (Dr.) Abubakar Bukola Saraki on the occasion of the public hearing on the “Abuse and Mismanagement of the Treasury Single Account” organized by the Senate Joint Committee on Finance, Banking, Insurance, And Other Financial Institutions And Public Accounts.