Buhari to RMAFC: Block leakages from federation account

***swears in commission’s chairman, commissioners

President Muhammadu Buhari has charged the Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) to block all leakages in the federation account and explore non-oil sectors to enhance the nation’s revenue.

He gave the charge while swearing in the chairman and 39 commissioners of the commission at the presidential villa, Abuja on Thursday.

Buhari said: “Concentrate more on expanding the sources of revenue to the Federation Account and other non-oil sources including solid mineral.

“Use all legal ways and means to strengthen its monitoring mechanism and block leakages of revenue from the Federations Account. All relevant laws and regulations on revenue collections and remittances should be fully complied with and appropriate sanctions visited on defaulters.

“Let me assure you that the government will continue to provide all the necessary support that will facilitate the achievement of your constitutional mandate. I, therefore, use this medium to call on the National Assembly to enact relevant enabling laws that shall guarantee the Commission the legal ability to ensure that defaulters of revenue laws are appropriately sanctioned.”

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The President restated his intention to lift millions of Nigerians out of poverty, saying that one of the ways was to extend credit facilities currently available to be able to encourage and support domestic production of basic goods and reduce reliance on imported goods.

He added: “In my speech on June 12, Democracy Day, I informed Nigerians that this administration has laid the foundation for transforming our country and liberating our people from the shackles of poverty by putting policies and measures to integrate our rural economies to the national economic grid.

“One measure is to extend credit facilities currently available to be able to encourage and support domestic production of basic goods and reduce our reliance on imported goods.

“I set a target for our country to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in ten years. This commitment is to further challenge the Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission to rise to its constitutional responsibilities and mandate.”

While congratulating the commission chairman and members, the President pointed out that their mandate, adding: “As a Commission, you are empowered by the Constitution to among other duties: monitor the accruals to and disbursement of revenue from the Federation Account.

“Review, from time to time, the revenue allocation formulae and principles in operation and advise the government on the need for any changes; advice the Federal, State, and Local Governments on fiscal efficiency and methods by which their revenue is to be increased.

“Determine remunerations appropriate for Political/Public Office Holders. Make recommendations and submit findings by a report thereto to the government of the Federation or of the State, as the case may be, regarding the formula for the distribution of the Federation Accounts and the Local Government Accounts.

“Discharge such other functions as may be conferred on the Commission by Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, this Act, or any other Act of the National Assembly.

“The mandate of the Commission is very wide and has an important role in our country’s economy. The Commission must be fair and just to the three Tiers and Arms of Government without compromising its core mandate.”

The commission inaugurated by the President has Engr Lax N Mbam from Ebonyi State as chairman.

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