Return All Unspent Monies Or Go To Jail, ICPC Warns Ministers and Directors

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has ordered Ministries, Departments And Agencies (MDAs) to return all unspent monies on personnel votes to the Sub-Treasury of the Federation not later than Monday, December 31, 2012, or face the law.

The Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) Ekpo Nta

A statement by the Commission’s chairman, Ekpo Nta, also ordered the MDAs to submit the receipt and expenditure profiles of their personnel cost to the commission not later than January 31, 2013, using a template approved by the commission.

To underscore the seriousness his commission attaches to the directives, the ICPC chairman said “letters have been sent to the various Ministries, Departments and Agencies for strict compliance and to note that any infraction will be prosecuted.”

Mr Nta also announced that the “Commission will commence verification for the returns made to the Sub-Treasury by February, 2013.”

Below is the full text of Mr Nta’s statement:

TREATMENT OF UNSPENT BALANCES OF 2012 PERSONNEL VOTES

The Commission has carried out a pilot System Study and Review on the utilization of the 2011 Personnel Vote of some Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs). Observable lapses were highlighted and discussed with the various MDAs.

The Commission will be carrying out another System Study and Review of the 2012 Personnel Vote to ensure total compliance with Section 16 of the Finance (Control and Management) Act, LFN, 1990 and the Financial Regulations regarding unspent balances in line with the Accountant-General of Nigeria’s Circular No. TRY/A5 & B5/2011 of 20th November, 2012.

All MDAs are requested to submit the Receipt and Expenditure profiles of their Personnel Cost to reach the Commission not later than January 31, 2013 using the approved template. For avoidance of doubt, Personnel Vote is for the payment of salaries and allowances for Government employees only. “All unspent balances should be returned to the Sub-Treasury of the Federation by 31st December, 2012.

The Commission will commence verification of the returns made to the Sub-Treasury by February, 2013. Letters have been sent to the various Ministries, Departments and Agencies for strict compliance and to note that any infraction will be prosecuted.

Budget implementation: Senate demands details of funds released to MDAs for 2012

The controversy over the implementation of the 2012 budget seems not settled yet, as the Chairman Senate Committee on Rules and business, Senator Ita Enang, has accused the Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF) of failing to present to the national assembly details of the funds released to Ministries, Agencies and Departments (MDAs).

Briefing journalists in Abuja, on Friday, Senator Enang stated the Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF) is required by law in the Appropriation Act, to present to the national assembly details of the funds released to government ministries, agencies and departments.

However, the Senator noted that the AGF has failed to do this, and in essence giving rise to the controversy of the performance of the budget.

According to him, the executive has thereby breached provisions of the 2012 Appropriation Act.

House expresses concern over 2012 Budget

Members of the House of Representatives have restated their concerns over the poor implementation of the 2012 budget.

The lawmakers, who had expressed their displeasure over the poor implementation of the budget in July, once again debated the issue in plenary.

The debate was however cut short as the lawmakers resolved that it may be richer in content if conducted after committees have carried out an extensive oversight of all the MDAs (Ministries Departments and Agencies).

It’s been over eight weeks since the House of Representatives expressed its displeasure at what they termed the ‘‘low implementation of the 2012 Budget”.

They challenged the executive to ensure the level of implementation improves before they return from their recess, adding that this debate is to gauge how the executive complied with their recommendation.


The House however resolved that in the first week of October, committees will embark on a week-long oversight to verify, once and for all, the actual level of implementation of the 2012 budget.

2012 Budget: Okonjo-Iweala confirms that 41 percent has been implemented

The Coordinating Minister of the Economy and Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has confirmed that 41.3% of the 2012 capital budget has been implemented so far and that the implementation of the 2012 budget began in April after it was passed into law.

The Minister made this known while speaking at an interactive meeting with members of the Senate Committee on Appropriation on Thursday where she stated that President Goodluck Jonathan had been leading the drive for higher budget performance.

According to her, the sum of N1.3 trillion was appropriated for capital expenditure in the 2012 budget and out of this; the ministry has released N404 billion with N324 billion cash backed.

Mrs Okonjo-Iweala also stated that Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA’s) have used 56% of the funds cash backed for capital expenditure leaving 44% of the funds unused.

“So far, 56 per cent of the capital budget had been utilised while 44 per cent was still outstanding.”

“There is more room for utilisation. 56 per cent of the funds that has been released, has been used, meaning 44 per cent is still available for implementation” she said.

The Minister explained that, “if you measure what’s been implemented over the entire budget you get 13.7%. But because we’re talking about 4months, the implementation is 41%”

“The Federal Ministry of Finance is not holding back any budgeted funds. The CBN (Central Bank of Nigeria) can confirm that” she added, denying that there has been selection of projects.

The ministry had been providing funds to Ministries, Departments and Agencies “in bulk” she said.

“We release resources to MDAs in bulk. There is no discrimination. We don’t have a selective approach” she added.

She added that the ministry has so far released N1.6 trillion for recurrent expenditure.

The Minister claimed she was misquoted by the media and that the figures being thrown around on the level of budget implementation are not true.

Constituency Projects

Ahead of the meeting, the Senators had been displeased at remarks purported to have been made by the Minister blaming the tardy fund releases on Constituency Projects added into the appropriation act by the legislators.

On her alleged statements on constituency projects, Dr Okonjo-Iweala clarified her position saying it is not true that the president has told ministries not to implement constituency projects.

According to her, ministries have already launched the procurement process for the constituency projects.

She assured that the execution of the budget would be kept within January-December, adding that the current practice of extending it to March of the following year should be discontinued.

She also promised that the 2013 budget would be submitted to the National Assembly by September this year.