The Federation Account Allocation Committee, FAAC, could not hold its meeting on Wednesday as scheduled to consider and approve statutory allocation for the month of March to the three tiers of government due to revenue discrepancies.
The committee had on Tuesday held the technical session, where the revenue- generating agencies, including the Nigeria Customs Service, Federal Inland Revenue Service and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation presented the figures of the revenue generated and paid by them into the Federation Account.
Tuesday’s meeting was expected to be followed by yesterday’s plenary session during which the generated revenue would have been considered with a view to determining the part to be shared as distributions to the three tiers of government.
When the commissioners for finance from the 36 states arrived the Federal Ministry of Finance headquarters’ venue of the meeting, they realised that the meeting which should have been chaired by the Minister, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, had been put on hold.
Speaking on the development in an interview with journalists, the Chairman of the Forum of Finance Commissioners, Mallam Mahmoud Yunusa, described the postponement of the meeting occasioned by failure of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, to pay some collections into the Federation Account.
Yunusa explained that that was the second consecutive month that the meeting was postponed. dNNPC would not be honouring its statutory obligations to the Federation Account.
He pointed out that the inability of the corporation to remit accurate revenue to the Federation Account had become a cause for concern, adding that the state governors had decided to engage the state-owned oil corporation in discussions on the matter..
Yunusa, who is the Commissioner for Finance in Adamawa State, said a meeting had already been scheduled between the NNPC and the state governors at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He clarified: “We have some challenges; the figure we have got is far less than what was expected to be remitted by the NNPC.
“As it is now, there is a meeting between the governors and the top management of the NNPC at the Villa. I believe this is a very high level deliberation and something good will come out of it.”, the commissioner added.
He explained that given the current revenue challenges being experienced by the three tiers fo government, there was a growing need for the NNPC become more transparent responsible in its operations.
“There are processes. Before now, you don’t hear such news (underpayment of revenue); whatever issue you get, you deliberate on it. But because this government is a government of change, some level of transparency is expected.
“When you pick your figures and you submit your figures, the person that is supposed to look at them and deliberate on them will ask questions if need be”, Yunusa added.