COMMUNIQUE ISSUED AFTER A ONE-DAY RETREAT FOR NATIONAL ASSEMBLY MEMBERS ON UNDERSTANDING NIGERIA’S LOWER MIDDLE INCOME STATUS AND UNLOCKING POTENTIAL FOR LOCAL RESOURCE MOBILISATION FOR SOCIAL SECTOR FINANCING ORGANISED BY HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES COMMITTEES ON APPROPRIATION IN CONJUCTION WITH CIVIL SOCIETY LEGISLATIVE ADVOCACY CENTRE (CISLAC) HELD AT TRANSCORP HILTON HOTEL, ABUJA ON JULY 17TH, 2017.

The House of Representatives Committees on Appropriation in conjunction with Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) organised a one-day retreat for National Assembly Members. The retreat was aimed at providing an enabling platform for the Members to interact in proffering holistic solutions to the current trend and challenges confronting adequate and sustainable social sector financing coupled with the need to harness and strengthen domestic resources for social sector financing in the face of dwindling donors’ funding. The retreat drew about 60 participants from House of Representatives, Ministry of Budget and National Planning, civil society, and development partners.  It featured presentations from experts and representative of Minister of Budget and National Planning.

After exhaustive deliberations on various thematic issues, the following observations and recommendations were made:

Observations

  1. Adequate and sustainable financing for the social sectors of health, agriculture and education sectors, remains paramount to achieve healthy, secured and developed society.

  2. Delay and inadequate release of funds remain a systemic challenge to resource mobilisation, allocation and utilisation for the social sector development.

  3. The rebasing of Nigeria’s GDP has projected the nation as a middle income economy resulting in dwindling donors’ resources. The effect of the above is that by 2022 there would no reduced availability of grants and more external funds that can be accessed would be higher interest loans.

  4. A Technical Committee constituted by the Budget and Planning Office will critically observe, analyse, and address the impacts of Nigeria’s transition from lower to middle income status.

  5. The existing income measure in addition to social inequality does not commensurate with individual’s income level and has not adequately justified Nigeria’s transition from lower to middle income nation and the need for GDP rebasing.

  6. With revenue to GDP which stands at approximately 6% in 2016, Nigeria records the lowest revenue to GDP ratios in world.

  7. Continued mono-economic practice and lack of innovation for resource mobilisation with particular focus on oil revenue discourages the internal capacity and efforts at effectively harnessing domestic resources for financing social sector.

  8. High level inefficiency in tax legislation, collection and administration paves way for illegal/multiple taxation and grossly widens loopholes in governments’ revenue generation capacity.

Recommendations

  1. Prompt design of a holistic exit strategy for the domestication of social sector financing by embracing technically-know-how of various donors’ supported activities for significant reduction in major costs and strengthen social sector.

 

  1. Leveraging appropriate domestication and full-fledged implementation of various internationally ratified pro-poor policies on agriculture, health, education will help to enhance and harness local potential adequate and sustainable resource mobilisation for social sector.

  1. Enhanced cooperation among Ministries of Budget and National Planning, Finance and other benefitting Ministries and Agencies to promote joint ownership of the intervention projects and minimize the sectoral impact of declines in ODA flows in Nigeria.

  1. The need to start looking inward towards the production of vaccines, since it constitute a huge chunk of the grants given by the Donor Agencies

  1. Proactive multi-tier budgeting to promote greater coordination, efficient budgeting and improved outcomes in place of the focus on federal budgetary allocations.

  1. Appropriate and holistic National Population Policy to appropriately document and address pending issues like social inequality and GDP rebased to justify Nigeria’s status as middle income nation for effective social sector planning and financing.

  1. Prioritising key sector of the economy to mitigate wastage and shortfall in resource mobilisation and allocation for adequate and sustainable social sector financing in Nigeria.

  1. Adequate training and re-training programmes for tax collectors at all levels to promote innovation, expansion of the revenue base and coordination in tax collection and administration process for enhanced domestic resource mobilisation for social sector financing.

  1. Institutionalising revenue and expenditure tracking; and judicious utilisation of the nation’s revenue to effectively finance social sector and encourage citizens’ contribution towards revenue generation process.

  1. Immediate review and amendment of the nation’s obsolete tax legislation to enhance efficiency and innovation in the tax collection and administration, and sustainable revenue generation in Nigeria.

  1. Adopting international best practices in tax legislation and administration such as voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme with proactive effort to track compliance for lack of comprehensive data

Hon. Mustapha Bala Dawaki

House Committee Chairman on Appropriation

Hon. Babangida Ibrahim

House Committee Chairman on Finance

Tijjani Abdulkadir Jobe

House Committee Chairman on Sustainable Development Goals

Auwal Musa Rafsanjani

Executive Director, Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC)

By |2019-01-16T18:45:09+00:00January 16th, 2019|Categories: Communiques|0 Comments

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