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FRC collaborates with local institutions to boost economic growth

Zainab Ahmed, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning

 

The Fiscal Responsibility Commission (FRC) says it is collaborating with some local institutions to ensure effective utilisation and optimisation of the country’s resources to boost the economy.

The Acting Chairman, FRC, Mr Victor Muruako said this at a one-week capacity building workshop held in Zuba, Niger on Monday.

The institutions are Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (NIQS) and Society of Project Management and Development Professionals International.

The workshop was tagged: Maintaining Best Global Practices in Project Execution in Post COVID-19 Economy’.

Muruako recalled that the just concluded retreat of the FRC that Nigeria faced challenges with respect to revenues and the need for government to expedite action on the Fiscal Responsibility Act.

The acting chairman said both trainings were structured to respond to the economic challenges of COVID-19 and the “need to tactically respond as a commission”.

He said the: “Two major handles of the commission’s contribution to the economy are facilitating revenue through the payment of Operating Surplus by Government Owned Enterprises (GOE) as well as capital project and revenue monitoring.

“We are understudying solutions of the prevailing medium-term fiscal challenges through improved revenue to the government whilst also targeting value for money for every government contract with an oversight on the critical questions of procurement procedures.

“This is the justification of the chain of training activities by the commission from both the management retreat and this capacity building exercise.”

He emphasised that partnering with local institutions would help the commission achieve its objectives of boosting the nation’s economy.

“Today, we have Nigeria Institute of Quantity Surveyors and Society of Project Management and Development Professionals International who are going to help us in capacity building to ensure officials discharge their mandate under the Act.

“This is very important because this country needs our efforts more than ever before.

“We want to ensure before we get out there to verify the execution of Federal Government’s capital projects, we are going around the six geo-political zones of the country.

“Our staff are all there, ready but we need to strengthen them. That is why we have these local institutions who believe that our country will be better for it. We want to utilise what we have within,” he said.

Also, the President, NIQS, Mr Mohammed Abba Tor pointed out that the Nigeria’s revenue was dwindling due to the drop in oil prices at the international market.

Tor said that the NIQS would partner with the FRC to ensure the effective utilisation of the country’s scarce resources which he noted would trickle down to Nigerians, if effectively applied.

“There is a correlation in effective utilisation and enhancing the living standard of the citizen.

“The commission has impact in whatever they do in terms of maximising or optimising utilisation of resources, which will trickle down to the benefits and values of the ordinary citizen.

“Once we scale up utilisation, the common person will be the beneficiary because the little we have will be utilised efficiently through the mechanism of monitoring and evaluation of all going projects in the country.

“We want to ensure that they are utilised and applied effectively and efficiently; if they do that, you and I will be the beneficiaries of this.”

The NIQS president said the institution would sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with FRC to ensure a sustainable and continued relationship with it.

“The essence of the MoU is to ensure that we have a sustainable and continued relationship with the commission.

“That will give us the opportunity to come back from time to time to look at the integrity of what we have and the performances of the officers out there.

“It is going to be a new dawn in infrastructure development, effective utilisation of funds and also ensuring optimization of revenue as enshrined in the mandate of the Act of the commission,” he said. (NAN)

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