By Sam Terewayu
The visiting accountant general of Kogi State, Alh. Momoh Jubril who despite the long lingering salary issues in the state barely spend two days a week discharging his official duties. The best you can get is a Monday’s and Tuesday’s visitation when he’ll attend to few official issues at his exclusive residence within the government house premises. A place where he receives the high and mighties (commissioner for finance inclusive)
The Accountant General who many will agree with me doubles as the unofficial but authentic commissioner for finance receives report, request and feedback from the official but inauthentic and powerless commissioner for finance.
His relationship with the governor has further subjected civil servants, consultants and contractors to greater hardship. It’s a well know fact that even the governor cannot call him to order to remain in his duty post. Once the governor leaves the state on his usual sabbatical visit to Abuja the Alh. Jubril follow suit like a hand bag leaving the state on a stand still till they return.
The waiting for the return of the accountant general to the state whenever he’s out of the state capital is like waiting upon the lord.
The statutory functions and responsibilities of a commissioner for finance includes the following:
To control government funds and revenue expenditure.
To ensure an improvement of the internally generated revenue of the state.
To receive and ensure effective management of the state’s allocation form the Federation Account and other sources including IGR, grants, aids and loans.
To ensure effective and efficient management to harness government resources for optimum productivity.
To explore avenues and means of income generation such as foreign aids and loans.
To exploit opportunities created by the Central Bank of Nigeria and the Securities Exchange Commission and the financial sector of the economy.
The establishment of monthly state stabilization fund.
To formulate and implement credible and realistic economic blueprint for the State.
To provide necessary advice to the government in areas of investment opportunities.
To maintain and operate State accounts in addition to publishing statutory financial statements and formulation of beneficial and productive accounting policies for the state.
To ensure strict adherence to;
Finance Management and fiscal policy.
Application and enforcement of Government Financial Regulations.
iii. Acquisition and application of loans and advances.
Prudent management of government investments.
Application of external financial assistance and grants.
Rules and regulation of Boards of Survey and Inquiry.
While the statutory responsibilities of an accountant general of a state are stated as follows;
i. To establish, maintain and supervise approved Accounting Systems in all Ministries, Departments and Agencies.
ii. To ensure adequate security over Government funds by establishing and monitoring adequate Internal Control Systems through the Internal Audit Units in all Ministries, Departments and Agencies.
iii. To prepare yearly Financial Statements i.e the Final Accounts as required by law.
iv. To guide against the occurrence of Fraud, Embezzlement and Wastages of Government resources by making sure that monies collected are properly and promptly accounted for.
Those abreast of information in kogi state will agree with me that Alh. Momoh Jubril does more than stated above. Despite the fact that he hasn’t been to his office in months, He now acts as the commissioner for finance, Accountant General and sometimes even Auditor General. No wonder the commissioner for finance spends most of his time cracking jokes on whatsapp platforms.
Abuja is the federal capital, but one often gets the impression from my accountant general that it is his own state capital where he’s expected to discharge his duties.
Exactly when, then, does he discharge his duties?
At the federal capital, I know there is a lot he can do in Abuja to help his state. But it will definitely be uneasy for him to pretend that every of his regular visit is in the interest of the state.