The Nigerian Minister of Industry Trade and Investment Mr Adeniyi Adebayo says in order for public sector entity to keep proper accounts, full professional knowledge of the International Financial Reporting Standards and International Public Sector Accounting Standards must be acquired.
The Minister said this during the opening ceremony of a two day National Learning and Development Programme on Accounting and Financial Reporting in the Public Sector, organised by the Financial Reporting Council, FRC in collaboration with the office of the Accountant General of the Federation.
The Minister who was represented by his Technical Adviser, Mr Kamar Bakrin, stated that some public sector entities still use the Statement of Accounting Standards issued by the defunct Nigerian Accounting Standards Board as their reporting framework while others use a number of other formats.
According to him” I have been informed that the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria has carried out a review of some of the financial statements filed with them by a number of public sector entities and a lot has been revealed.
“It has been observed that there is lack of proper understanding of the requirements for credible financial reporting in the public sector,” he noted.
The Executive Secretary, Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria, Shuaibu Ahmed noted that between end of 2020 and 2021 to date, a total of 115 Public Sector Entities comprising of Government Parastatals, Government Agencies, and Government Business Entities have filed their Annual Financial Statements with the FRC.
While commending this significant progress, he said the Council has begun imposing fines and penalties on entities who have not filed, in line with the provisions of the FRC Act and its extant rules.
“Public Sector Entities play a pivotal role in the national economy as a major driver of productive activities and the largest single business entity.
As a bedrock of the economy, the importance of financial reporting quality in the national economy cannot be over emphasized,” Ahmed said.
“Credible financial reports are no doubt germane as they not only support efficient decision making by those charged with governance but also boost the perception index of the country and by extension, enhancing Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) and Foreign Portfolio Investments (FPIs) as veritable tools and catalysts for the nation’s economic growth.
“Public Sector Entities are expected to provide financial information that are not only timely but are accurate and useful for decision making and most importantly germane to evaluating the government performance as a bastion of public accountability and stewardship,” he added.
Also, the Accountant General of the Federation, Alhaji Ahmed Idris stated that the training which was a collaboration between the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria and the office of the Accountant General of the Federation was aimed at deeping the knowledge of operators in MDAs and building capacity for better financial reporting.
Alhaji Idris who was represented by the Director Consolidated Account Depertment, Mr Zubairu Salau, stated that it was hoped that at the end of the programme, participants would be equipped with the relevant skill to discharge their duties professionally.
Nigeria improves standards of Annual Financial Statements by public sector entities