By Umar Muhammad Puma
Auditor General to the Federation, AuGF, Mr Anthony Ayine, has said with only 1,500 workforce his agency cannot audit 471 Ministries, Departments and Agencies optimally.
Presenting his agency’s 2018 budget, Ayine said the Federal Government has 471 parastatals and agencies and the AuGF is required to comment on their audited financial statements.
“Due to inadequate capacity and the complex nature of some of the accounts, the review and comment of the audited financial statements of some of the agencies have to be outsourced.
He explained that”it is important to note that the current workforce will significantly be depleted when 54 officers and 139 officers retire from service this year.
“If no further recruitments are made to improve the strength of the workforce, this depleted workforce could constitute critical threats to the functioning of the office.
“For the office to function and achieve results, personnel cost budget ceilings of N1,909,022,726 should be replaced by a new personnel cost budget ceilings of N3,424,510,028.55.
Responding, Chairman of the Committee, Rep Kingsley Chinda, (PDP, Rivers), said “if this government truly wants to fight corruption then it must properly fund the office of the AuGF.
“In the civilised clime strong institutions are built not persons because here it’s who pays the piper that dictates the tunes and that is why the audit department should be independent of the three arms of government.
“We have concluded the audit Bill in the House and the Senate is seriously working on it and there is need for you to double your workforce.”