My attention was drawn to the Leadership Newspaper of Friday, 17th March, 2017 with the caption “ FG Summons NAFDAC DG Over N2.9bn Debt, Unapproved Expenditure” by a friend who is aware that i cover NAFDAC as my beat.
Leadership Newspaper reported that the federal government has summoned the acting Director-General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration & Control (NAFDAC), Mrs. Yetunde Oni to answer queries bordering on N2, 854,095,289.02 indebtedness to the Consolidated Revenue Fund with regards to past years’ Operating Surplus that have not been remitted.
The paper went further to say that the Federal Ministry of Finance has discovered that NAFDAC augmented its employees costs by N688, 421, 881.00 by using Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) in addition to appropriated sum of N4, 443, 243393.00 in 2017 draft budget.
I will talk more on the indebtedness to the Consolidated Revenue Fund with regards to past years’.
I am aware that several agencies apart from NAFDAC were summoned on the non-remittance to the Consolidated Revenue Fund but I know as a reporter covering NAFDAC that the agency has been in series of meetings on the alleged sum since 2016, and could only substantiate indebtedness in the non-remittance in the sum of N1.4b for which NAFDAC has gone into discussion for a 10year repayment plan.
I know very well that the NAFDAC DG, Mrs. Yetunde Oni is fully ready with her team to provide necessary explanation and authorization for the increase outside appropriation.
Mrs. Oni is well aware of the Sections 21 and 22 of the Fiscal Responsibility Act and has never worked outside the Law.
The NAFDAC Management will surely drastically review its draft budget downwards, where necessary, in line with the fiscal discipline expected under the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
Mrs. Yetunde Oni and her management team in NAFDAC are committed to fiscal discipline, financial accountability and maximisation of revenue generation in line with the current administration transparency policy.
Adewole Kehinde is a Journalist based in Abuja and can be reached via firstname.lastname@example.org