FGN seeks CSOs partnership on sustaining fiscal reforms 

 

The Federal Government of Nigeria has sought the partnership of Civil Society Organisations across the country on sustaining fiscal reforms initiated under the $1.5 billion World Bank-Assisted States Fiscal Transparency Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS) Programme for results which seeks to deepen fiscal transparency and accountability in Public Financial Management (PFM) system as a way of improving good fiscal governance at sub-national level.

According to a statement signed by the SFTAS Programme Communication Specialist, Mr. Ibrahim Mohammed, the SFTAS National Programme Coordinator, Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mr. Stephen Okon made this call during a sensitization workshop organized for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) which held weekend in Lagos.

Mr. Okon explained that as part of its strategies to ensure the sustainability of fiscal reforms at sub-national level, the SFTAS Programme Coordination Unit (PCU) was engaging stakeholders on the demand side like the CSOs who can ensure that fiscal transparency and accountability are sustained in state PFM activities.

He further disclosed that the objectives of the workshop were to deepen the understanding of CSOs on the major programme elements of the SFTAS Programme for results; enhance programme visibility and buy-in; create and sustain mutual lines of communication, contact and understanding between the PCU and the CSOs; enhance community mobilization for programme ideals’ sustainability; and engender ownership and participation by CSOs post-SFTAS.

“At this juncture, I wish to stress that this programme now in its fourth and final year of implementation needs to be sustained if the full ideals are to be realized. I therefore call on CSOs and the media to continue to promote those ideals and take full ownership of the programme beyond its life span”.

“Some of these ideals already entrenched in the States’ PFM system include online publication of approved Citizens’ budget, Audited Financial Statements, improved procurement practices for increased transparency and value for money; strengthened public debt management and fiscal responsibility framework; improved clearance/reduction of stock of domestic expenditure arrears; and improved debt sustainability”.