Stakeholders drawn from all spheres of the Nigerian economy have pledged their support for the Federal Government’s Treasury Single Account (TSA) policy which has since its September 15, 2015 implementation returned over N5.2 trillion to the national Treasury.
At the conclusion of a recent 2-day retreat in Abuja tagged ‘One Year Anniversary of TSA: Benefits, Challenges and Way Forward’, participants – comprising the Office of the Vice President, Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation (OAGF) and representatives of ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) – emphasised that while the policy was experiencing teething problems, it had recorded significant gains in the past one year which necessitated continuity, such as transparency and accountability, minimised cost of governance, and ease of payment.
Going forward, they resolved to fully comply with the provisions of the TSA, educate the citizenry on its benefits, extend coverage to include foreign funds and fully automate the process to plug leakages.
Minister of Finance Mrs Kemi Adeosun had earlier said the government was poised to expand the scope of the TSA to include more agencies this year. She assured that the current administration would consolidate on the success the policy had achieved for expansion and persuade statutory agencies to be part of it.
“The TSA has brought considerable gains to the federal government and the Nigerian economy. We have successfully eliminated multiple banking arrangements which were spread over deposit money banks across the country. This has further brought about transparency and effective tracking of government revenues,” disclosed Accountant-General of the Federation Ali Ahmed Idris.
Financial technology company SystemSpecs assured that its Remita software which is the payment gateway for the TSA would align with the new vision. Its Managing Director John Obaro, a frontline panellist at the event, expressed delight at the success of the initiative which has been driven largely by its indigenous software. However, he observed that there were challenges which are not uncommon at the inception of revolutionary policies such as the TSA.
He said: “SystemSpecs is not unmindful that people have had to go to different banks to make payment but experience one challenge or the other. We are addressing this through mobile technology. In the coming weeks, the citizenry will be able to transact both TSA and non-TSA payments directly from their mobile phones and stay in better control of their finances without necessarily having to visit bank branches.”
The TSA is a unified structure of bank accounts that provides a consolidated view of government cash resources based on the principle of unity of cash and treasury through which the government transacts all its receipts and payments. The policy is ratified by section 80 (1) of the 1999 constitution, which stipulates that all revenues raised or received by the federation shall be paid into and form one Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF) of the Federation.
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