Fight Against Corruption: Senate Passes Federal Audit Services Bill
Today, the 8th Senate passed another landmark Bill in the fight against corruption. The Bill, known as the Federal Audit Service Commission Bill, 2018 ( HB. 107), which was passed for concurrence, is aimed at: establishing the office of the Auditor-General for the Federation and provide additional powers and functions to the office; establishing the Federal Audit Service Commission; repealing the Audit Act 1956, the Public Accounts Committees Act; and enacting the Federal Audit Service Bill, 2015.
Speaking on this development, President of the Senate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki said: “Today is a landmark achievement in the fight against corruption. This is will bring accountability and probity in the finances of the government and the fight against corruption.
“I must commend all the members of the National Assembly, both the Senate and the House of Representatives. This will go a long way in ensuring the independence of the office of the Auditor-General and will ensure that the Auditor-General has access to different parastatal agencies.
“We truly have to block all the various leakages. We have to ensure that we get this to Mr. President to get his assent. We have gone a long way in this administration in our fight against corruption, and it is commendable that the National Assembly are the sponsors and movers of this very important Bill, which we can see has been outdated for many years. We will continue to play our part in this fight against corruption for the sake our country,” he said.
These are the 24 Benefits of the Federal Audit Services Bill Passed by the 8th Senate Today
Functions of the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation:
1. Expressing an opinion on whether the financial statement prepared by the government of the federation fairly represents or otherwise the financial position and results of operation
2. Carrying out audit, except when the Constitution provides otherwise, of all revenues accruing to the Federation and all expenditures of the Federation from all sources
3. Carrying out audit, except otherwise provided by the Constitution, of donations, grants and loans accruable to the Federal Ministries, departments and agencies or other public entities
4. Carrying out performance audit by ensuring that Federal Government and its agencies business is economically, efficiently and effectively performed
5. Carrying out audit on classified expenditure
6. Carrying out forensic audits
7. Carrying out audit of international institutions to the extent of Nigeria’s contribution to such bodies
8. Carrying out audit of all Federal government and its agencies subsidies and their application
9. Carrying out audit of all federal government and its agencies’ counterpart funded projects in the country
10. Carrying out audit of all Nigerian embassies, consulates and foreign missions
11. Carrying out audit of performance information
12. Carrying out audit of disaster related grants and aids
13. Carrying out audit of public private partnership entered into by the Federal government and its agencies assets and promote good governance
Powers of the Auditor-General:
14. Power to select the methodology to be adopted in respect of an audit;
15. Power to determine the nature and extent of audit to be carried out and request details, account statements and financial statements, that he considers necessary;
16. Request in writing, any person in the employ of the Federal ministries, departments and agencies and international institutions whose accounts are being audited by the Office of the Auditor-General to make an appearance at a specified place and time; or produce such records, books, vouchers and documents under the control of that person;
17. Power to investigate and make extracts from any record, book, document and other information of any federal ministries, department and agencies or international institutions whose accounts are being audited by the Office of the Auditor-General;
18. Power to liaise with persons, federal ministries, departments and agencies or other entities and international institutions in Nigeria or outside Nigeria, on such conditions as he deems t for the proper performance of his functions;
19. Power to surcharge the amount of any expenditure which has not been duly brought into account or the amount of any loss or deficiency incurred;
20. Power to revoke any surcharge imposed by the Office of the Auditor-General
21. Power to direct the withholding of the emoluments and allowances of persons who fail or refuse to reply to audit queries in 30 days and for as long as the person fails to comply
22. Power to have restricted access to persons, documents, records and other information necessary for proper discharge of statutory obligations;
23. Power to audit all money accruing to the nation or federal ministries, agencies and departments or other public entities and international institutions;
24. Power to audit donations, grants, loans and other forms of assistance accruable to the federal government agencies, ministries and departments.