The Osun State Auditor-General, Mr. Folorunso Adesina, has described the administration of Governor Gboyega Oyetola as most transparent, saying it is committed to accountability, openness and probity in the management of State resources and finances.
He said Osun under Oyetola’s government’s Public Finance Management (PFM) Reform has got a big boost by becoming one of the pioneer States to assent to and implement Audit Act in Nigeria, a feet the Federal Government is still to attain.
This is even as the State government presented the Year 2019 audited accounts to intimate the public on the status of the State’s finances within the audited period as part of efforts to showcase prudence in the management of public resources and strengthen public trust and confidence in governance.
Adesina spoke on Wednesday while reeling out the audited reports of the finances of the State for the year 2019, at Aurora Events Centre, Osogbo.
He noted that the presentation of the 2019 Audited Account in 2021 was as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic that broke out last year March, saying the Audited Accounts ought to have been presented before now, 2020 to be precise.
The Forum was put together by the Office of the Auditor General in collaboration with EU/World Bank Assisted and Local Governance Reform (SLOGOR) Project.
The State Auditor-General who described Public Finance Management Reform as internationally- acceptable guidelines for audit processes, said it is worthy of note that the current administration is committed to the use of Bank Account Monitoring System (BAMS) and Treasury Single Account (TSA) since inception.
He lauded the noble initiative to financial re-engineering employed by the State which according to him had assisted in the monitoring of day-to-day transaction of the government, which in turn qualifies the State for World Bank “State and Fiscal Transparency and Accountability programme (SIFTAS).”
Speaking on the sterling financial performance of the State so far, particularly within the audit year under review, Adesina said it was generally discovered that government executed people-oriented programmes and that prudence was put in the forefront towards good governance.
“Bearing the living standard and socioeconomic investment in capital expenditure of the government in the year under review, and in order to ascertain if the level of work commensurates with the huge amount expended as shown earlier that 51.40% was expended on economic sector
while 36.87% was expended on social sector, this office conducted value for money audit on some of these expenditures as it relates to Social and Economic sector.
“On health sector, it was revealed that hundreds of Primary Healthcare Centres had been built, rehabilitated, revitalised and delivered for public use as at the time of this report and more to be delivered and the location of the health centres and health equipment supplied (including consumables) were confirmation of this government’s priority for the wellbeing of the masses.
“Audit visited some renovated schools and the educational materials supplied like desks and chairs, books, shelves etc were inspected across the State. It was discovered that these amenities were effective and efficient for the target masses.
“Also on infrastructure, the project monitoring team of this office inspected all the road constructions embarked upon by the State like Gbongan-Akoda road, Osogbo ring road, etc., and it was discovered that best available standards were used in the construction of the roads, thereby making available to the masses, good and solid road network which has impacted greatly on the lives of the people and has helped to transform the socioeconomic status of the State.
“It was also discovered that efforts to reinstate the State to agriculture hub of southwest was also embarked upon with provision of more farm settlements and seedlings for farmers while dredging of rivers and planting of trees at the river bank were done to avoid erosion”, Adesina added.
While presenting the audited accounts report for the said year, Adesina said he had examined the accounts and the financial statements of the State Government for the Year ended 31st December, 2019 in compliance with the provisions of Section 125(2) of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.
According to him, the audit was conducted in accordance with International Standards on Auditing as applicable to the public sector and the provisions of Section 125(5) of the same Constitution.
He noted that the consolidated financial summary for year 2019 has the Total Revenue of N101, 177, 021, 193.03; Total Recurrent Expenditure of N71, 932, 187, 306.95 and Total Capital Expenditure of N30, 095, 322, 847.24 respectively.
Adesina further reported that Total Expenditure was put at N102, 027, 510, 154. 19; Net Cash Balance was put at N850, 488, 961. 16; Opening Cash Balance, including call account was put at N11, 207, 102, 272. 30 and Closing Cash Balance was put at N10, 356, 311. 14 respectively.
“The Accounts of the State Government of Osun, for the Year Ended 31st December, 2019 have been audited under my directive in accordance with the provision of Section 125 Subsection 2 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
“I have certified the individual accounts (Cash flow Statement, Statement of Financial Performance, Statement of Financial Position, Statement of Change in Asset/Equity and Notes to the Accounts) as correct subject to the observations made in this report.
“My Office had also commented on the reports of the private audit firms engaged by Government Agencies and Parastatals to audit their accounts in line with the provisions of Section 125 (3) (b) of 1999 Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
“In fulfilling the provisions of the extant requirements of Financial Regulations, my Office within the financial year under review had carried out: Financial Audit in accordance with the laws to determine whether the accounts have been satisfactorily and faithfully kept, Appropriation Audit to ensure that funds are expended as appropriated by the State House of Assembly.
“The Financial Statements are hereby certified to be free from material misstatements subject to comments and observations contained in the Management’s report.
“In my opinion, projects and programmes executed were satisfactory in consideration of fund employed and the Financial Statements (1-4) and related schedules give a true and fair view of the state of affairs of the State Government of Osun as at 31st December, 2019,” Adesina added.
Earlier, the Speaker, Osun House of Assembly, Hon. Timothy Owoeye acknowledged the financial prowess of Governor Oyetola which had culminated in winning of accolades in the management of public treasury.
Owoeye, who was represented by the Chairman House Committee on Public Accounts, Hon. Gbenga Ogunkanmi, reiterated the legislature’s continued support to the State government.
Commissioner of Finance, Mr. Bola Oyebamiji, said the Oyetola Administration had demonstrated the required capacity in the management of the State resources as part of efforts to ensure good governance.
The Project Coordinator, State and Local Governance Reform Project, Mr. Yemi Ijidele, commended the Administration of Governor Oyetola for being honest, transparent and accountable to the public as manifested in the prudence management of the public treasury.
He lauded the administration for its timely support and cooperation which had helped to strengthen the financial status of the state.
In his remarks, the Head of Service, Dr. Olowogboyega Oyebade extolled the Administration for prioritising transparency in the management of the State treasury since assumption of office.
He said the presentation of the State Audited Accounts shows that the government has nothing to hide as it remains an avenue to prove that the government really means business and that it is honest, accountable and transparent.
US Exchange Alumni Association Empowers Osun Women, Gives Cash Grant
The United States Government Exchange Alumni Association has presented fifty thousand naira grant to twenty selected indigent women in Osun State to support their nano businesses.
The presentation, tagged ‘Business capital Support’, was done on Friday by the State Deputy Governor, Kola Adewusi at the US Corridor within the Osun State University Teaching Hospital in Osogbo.
A 2-day entrepreneurship training was earlier this week, organized for the 20 selected indigent women by the US Government Alumni Association in Osogbo with the support of SMEDAN.
At the presentation of the cash grant to the women, the State coordinator of US Government Alumni Association, Dr. Femi Adefila said, the programme was concieved empower women in nano business, to promote and support their businesses and build a viable economy at the grassroots.
He noted that the beneficiaries were selected on merit, adding that they were selected through a phone in interview with Rave FM, where they indicated the type business they were into and the kind of support they need to boast their business.
Adefila said “On Rave Fm, there’s a programme called “karakata”, it was from this programme, that the women called in and asked questions about their businesses and the struggles they are going through.
”So after much survey and findings, we were able to select 20 women out of 100, and we decided to empower them through the US Government Exchange Alumni Association“
Addressing the beneficiaries, the State Deputy Governor tasked them to manage the grant judiciously
Adewusi lauded the Association for organizing the empowerment and training programmes for the women.
He expressed conviction that more people would be lifted out of poverty with the initiative.
Adewusi said, “First and foremost, I’d like to commend the conveners for supporting these women in the State, empowering these women is this trying times, it’s a commendable effort.
” I also want to congratulate the women for being part of this, I implore you to make judicious use of these money given to you, support your business and not give away these funds. When you invest in your business, it grows and you can use it to support your family”, he stated.
Reviving Nigeria’s Economy: Ooni Advocates Use Of Local Products, Urges Leaders To Show Example
The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi has resonated the need for leaders across board to embrace the use of local products.
He said the sure way to grow the nation’s economy is for all to cultivate habit of using more of local contents, urging leaders at various levels to show example.
Ooni Ogunwusi stated these on Thursday in his palace in Ile-Ife where he received two vehicles and three motorbikes from one of the indigenous vehicle manufacturing companies in Nigeria on commemoration of his 8th years on the throne.
Oba Ogunwusi called on political leaders to desist from promoting foreign commodities, adding that Nigerian lawmakers should make it mandatory for anyone having any business with the parliament to wear and make use of indigenous products.
The monarch charged President Bola Tinubu, governors and federal lawmakers to include locally made and assembled vehicles in their fleet.
He said, “The earlier we know we cannot continue to kill our own, the better for us in this country. I took it upon myself to support and rally support for Innoson Motors and other local products because this is part of ways to boost our economy. Now that we have a company that produces vehicles, our governors should ensure establishment of companies that deal with manufacturing of components of vehicles such as car keys, windscreen, mirror among others.
“Why are we always benchmarking our economy on dollar? I want to appeal to our leaders that enough of promoting foreign commodities. Enough of benchmarking everything with dollar. Let us encourage local production and products. How many of what they (leaders) eat and wear are manufactured in Nigeria? Indigenous products from human, materials and human capital development should be prioritised.
“I will include Innoson vehicles in my own fleet and let our leaders support so that we can address youth unemployment. Our leaders should not sign any contract if they don’t have local touch.
“National Assembly should promulgate a law that everybody coming to NASS should have indigenous production. Start grading yourself. If you are wearing ten things, seven must be made in Nigeria. Let it be our policy. If we do that everything will be better. Let our leaders stop deceiving us in this country. National Assembly should start making laws that are impactful. We pray we don’t have a backlash of frustrated youths in this country.”
Weeks After Peace Resolution: Ifon/Ilobu Crisis Brewing Again
…as Ilobu farmers face alleged attacks, alert government to nip situation in the bud
Barely eight weeks after a peace resolution was signed between the two warring communities and curfew lifted on the areas, the Ifon/Ilobu crisis seemed to be brewing again.
Some farmers of Ilobu extraction on Wednesday staged a peaceful protest in the town against what they described as incessant attacks on them on their farms by some members of Ifon community.
The protest, they said, was staged to register and to condemn incessant attack and harassment by their aggressors on their farmland located in Oyo State.
The protesters called on the state government to make concrete effort to ensure permanent solution to the crisis between the two communities, adding that they had been left with their fate after the signing of peace in October 6th, this year.
The protesting famers have their farmlands where they alleged to have been threatened in villages including; Aba Agana Amoo, Abebi, Ologele, Olosho, Ojeyemi, Idiroko, Bara, Ojeyemi, Toolu, Wale, Ikimo, all within Oyo State.
They carried placards with various inscriptions such as; We call for justice, Arrest Eesa and Jide Akinyooye, We farm on oyo land not Ifon Osun among others, chanting songs to demonstrated their grievances.
Some of the famers, Bashiru Adegbenro, Wakili Olawoyin and Jimoh Adeyinka, said the perpetrators they came to attack them on the 4th of October on their farmland in Oyo state.
They said their farms, houses were burnt and destroyed in some instances, while some farm produces were being carted away by their aggresors.
Earlier on Wednesday, at a press conference, the PRO, Ilobu Asake Development Union, ODU, Tairu Babatunde had on behalf of the Union reiterated the town’s commitment to peaceful coexistence with all its neighbours.
Babatunde decried any sinister moves in disrespect of the peace deal between the two communities by any elements.
He said “It is, however, disheartening and shocking that despite this olive branch extended by the people of Ilobu to our neighbors, most particularly, the people of Ifon-Osun, what we receive is more attacks, dehumanization, destruction of properties and harassment of our people. This is very sad and it’s the only reason we have invited you here today. The world must know. Ilobu-Asake Development Union is an umbrella body for all sons and daughters of Ilobu and we owe it a duty to protect their interest.
“I want to tell you that since the ceasefire was declared, our people who are plying their trades in villages such as Oloso, Idi-Iriko, Owode and several other villages in Oyo State have not been allowed to witness peace. It has been attacks over attacks.
“Harassment and torture. We believe this must stop. Several farmlands invaded by people of Ifon-Osun whose name will be mentioned by victims that are here today. We have also submitted petition to relevant agencies and the government.
The PRO called for the immediate arrest and prosecution of the perpetrators of the attacks on Ilobu farmers.
He said “We want to advise the State government that peace building is a process and not an action, we want them to continue engagement as no engagement has been held since October 6th when the peace deal was signed.
“We also want the agents of the government, particularly, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Security, Adekunle Omoyele to stop acting like an agent of Ifon people. The recent arrest of tipper drivers in Ilobu which was coordinated by him without recourse to Ilobu Divisional Police who have been at the center of managing this crisis, necessitated this call.”
Recall that, few months ago when lives and property were lost during the crisis between the two communities, the State Governor, Senator Ademola Adeleke imposed dusk to dawn curfew on both Irepodun and Orolu local government areas to ensure that the crisis did not degenerate.
The Governor, on the 6th of October facilitated the signing of peace accord between the communities and alap lifted the curfew on the two local government areas.
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