Budgetary travails of the auditor-general

DDG Weekly Column

Budgetary travails of the auditor-general

It is very unfortunate that we have not noticed the concerted efforts, determination to undermine the office of the auditor-general of the federation (through the recent budgetary downplaying of the 2023 budgetary appropriation for the office of the auditor-general)

Oluwole Oke, Chairman, House of Representatives’ Committee on Public Accounts

Ordinarily, a nation’s determination, even sense of mission, on any particular subject or policy issue is best understood as a derivative of the weight of financial commitment accruing to that policy. Hence, for instance, a nation’s spending of a substantial amount of resources rearming or re-kitting its military is read off as putting teeth to their bite. Rhetoric, however elegant, cannot substitute for resolution and consistent spending on particular policy goals. Consequently, the recent controversy regarding the comparatively paltry amount of allocation to the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation speaks volumes, as pointed out in the opening quote sourced from Oke.

Recently, Oke lamented that the budgetary appropriation for that office was slashed somewhat drastically to less than half of what was demanded, leaving it at a slim N5.112bn, making it almost equal to what was appropriated for local and foreign trips of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo (SAN). That is why Oke concluded that we are dealing with a case of subversion of an institution, which is critical to the success of the anti-corruption programme.