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Dr Dikwa advocates creation of State laws to implement financial autonomy for legislature, judiciary

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Dr Dikwa advocates  creation of State laws to implement financial autonomy for legislature, judiciary

 

The pioneer Permanent Secretary, (Special Duties), Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget, and National Planning and Founder of Al-Ansar Foundation,

Dr Mohammed Kyari Dikwa has called for the creation of State laws to provide legal frameworks for the implementation of financial autonomy for the legislative and judiciary arms of government.

Dr Muhammad Kyari Dikwa President and Founder of Al-Ansar Foundation With all commissioners of finance from North-East, Adamawa, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe.

Dr Dikwa made the call while delivering a lecture titled “The implications of emerging autonomy of States’ legislative and judiciary arms and management of the federation account” at the 2021 National Council on Finance and Economic Development (NACOFED) which was held in Lagos from 14th – 17th November 2021.

1st from right, Governor of Lagos; 2nd, Former of Governor of Gombe State; 3rd, Minister of Finance;
4th, DG CMD; 5th, Dr MK Dikwa 6th, Commissioner of Rev Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission.

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According to him, the government is operated under a tripartite arrangement whereby provision is made for an organ to make laws, for another to execute the laws made, and for yet another organ to interpret the laws, which is known as “horizontal” separation of powers. He added that on a vertical scale, governmental powers are distributed between the central, state, and local governments in the way and manner provided for by the Constitution.

Dr Dikwa also noted that “this concept of separation of powers is not absolute, as the Constitution recognises instances where the executive can take actions in areas meant for the judiciary (such as in the appointment of judges); the legislature also oversees some responsibilities of the executive or even judicial activities (e.g. confirmation of the appointment of some Judicial officers, approval of the budget and other management of state funds); while the judiciary can review the activities of either of the other two arms of government. This is known as the complementary concept of checks and balances.”

2021 National Council on Finance and Economic Development (NACOFED)
2021 National Council on Finance and Economic Development (NACOFED)

The retired Permanent Secretary advised Heads of the Judiciary and legislators to provide the necessary liaison with existing government agencies such as the Office of the Accountant-General (at both federal and state levels) and the Budget Offices to ensure the effective take-off of implementation.

He also urged them to familiarize themselves with the various provisions of the Public Procurement Act, Finance Acts, as well as other regulations guiding financial expenditures, adding that States should set up implementation committees that would coordinate with the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning and its agencies on the effective implementation of the order to avoid deductions as the source.

Dikwa recalled that the Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC), on its part, is established under section 6 (1) of the Allocation of Revenue (Federation Account, ETC.) Act, to ensure that allocations made to the States from the Federation Account are promptly and fully paid into the treasury (Consolidated Revenue Fund) of each State on the basis and terms prescribed, and to report annually to the National Assembly in respect of the function specified in the above paragraph, adding that “States government may want to use this as a template that specifies the roles and responsibilities as well as the reporting structures for SAAC.”

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According to him, Capacity Development across all levels affected by the executive order as well as continuous wider stakeholder consultations are also recommended.

He concluded his lecture by reiterating that with public resources being extremely limited, and the prioritization of states allocation creating competition among the different public entities, it is expected that full implementation of the executive order may be delayed.

In his words, “Since the challenge for governments is to ensure a good level of public service, or to improve performance of public expenditure thus driving efficiency, it is recommended that a business-like approach to public finance management, called New Public Management (NPM), should be implemented at the sub-national government.”

 

Dr Dikwa advocates the creation of State laws to implement financial autonomy for legislature, judiciary

 

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