TREASURY SINGLE ACCOUNT: A VIABLE TOOL FOR REPOSITIONING GOVERNMENT MINISTRIES, DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES (MDAS) FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA

Project TopicsTREASURY SINGLE ACCOUNT: A VIABLE TOOL FOR REPOSITIONING GOVERNMENT MINISTRIES, DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES (MDAS) FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA

Abstract

Treasury Single Account (TSA) policy in Nigeria is a government accounting system under which all government revenue receipts and income from FEDERAL Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) are collected into one single account, usually maintained by the Central Bank of Nigeria and all payments done through this account as well in order to enhance accountability of government revenue; transparency and avoid misapplication of public funds. The implementation of TSA policy in Nigeria has generated mixed reactions on it effect on Federal Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs). Based on the foregoing, the study assessed the effects of TSA on Federal Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs). To achieve the objective of the study, primary and secondary sources of data were used. Questionnaires were used for the collection of primary data. A sample size of 150 was purposively drawn from the study population which comprises of Federal Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs. Descriptive statistic (percentages) and Chi -square (X2) analytical technique were utilized in the analyses of data and test of hypothesis. The calculated Chi-square (X2) results for the hypothesis Ho1: Treasury Single Account does not enhance the repositioning of Federal Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) for sustainable development, shows; X210.71 and the table X2 value at 5% level of significance was 2.733.The results show that Treasury Single Account has enhanced the repositioning of Federal Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) for sustainable development. The study results also shows that TSA has enhanced regular monitoring of government cash balances, accountability and transparency, efficient use of government financial resources, probity, reduction of cost of borrowing and help to check corruption in Federal Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs). Also the study shows that MDAs in Nigeria have not been able to adequately used TSA to enhance economic development in Nigeria among others. The study recommended among others that TSA should be embrace by all Government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) at all level of governments; federal, states and local government councils in Nigeria and that MDAs in Nigeria should take advantages of TSA policy implementation to enhance economic development in Nigeria by keying into all aspects of the policy drive and urgently addressing all the shortcoming associated with the policy. The study concluded that TSA is a viable tool that enhanced repositioning of MDAs in Nigeria and as such it should be use to facilitate economic development in Nigeria.

Introduction

Treasury Single Account (TSA) is not a new concept in Nigeria. Chima (2015) opined that the policy was first implemented in 1989 and the implementation was associated with turbulence in the banking industry. The President Olusegun Obasanjo’s led administration centered the idea on the Government integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS). Earlier in February, 2015 the Central Bank of Nigeria issued a circular directing all deposit money banks to implement the Remita e-Collection Platform. The Remita e-Collection is a technology platform deployed by the Federal Government to support the collection and remittance of all government revenue to a Consolidated Account domiciled with the CBN. This marked the beginning of the full implementation of Treasury Single Account (TSA) system in Nigeria. Though section 80 (1) and section 162 of the 1999 Constitution as amended states “All revenues, or other moneys raised or received by the Federation (not being revenues or other moneys payable under this Constitution or any Act of the National Assembly into any other public fund of the Federation established for a specific purpose) shall be paid into and form one Consolidated Revenue Fund of the Federation. Successive governments have continued to operate multiple accounts for the collection and spending of government revenue in flagrant disregard to the provisions of the constitution which requires that all government revenues be remitted into a single account. It was not until 2012 that government ran a pilot scheme for a single account using 217 Ministries Departments and Agencies as a test case. The pilot scheme saved the country about N500 billion in frivolous spending. The success of the pilot scheme motivated the government to fully implement TSA, leading to the directives to banks to implement the technology platform that will help accommodate all MDAs in the TSA scheme (Nairaland, 2015).

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has opened a Consolidated Revenue Account to receive all government revenue and effect payments through this account. This is the Treasury Single Account. All Ministries, Departments and Agencies are expected to remit their revenue collections to this account through the individual commercial banks who act as collection agents. This means that the money deposit banks will continue to maintain revenue collection accounts for MDA’s but all monies collected by these banks will have to be remitted to the Consolidated Revenue Accounts with the CBN at the end of each banking day. In other words, MDA’s accounts with money deposit banks must have zero balance at the end of every banking day by a complete remittance to the TSA of all revenues collected. The implication is that banks will no longer have access to the float provided by the accounts they maintained for the MDA’s. Different types of accounts could be maintained under a TSA arrangement and these may include the TSA main account, subsidiary or sub-accounts, transaction accounts and zero balance account. Other types of accounts that could be operated include imprest accounts, transit accounts and correspondence accounts. These accounts are maintained for transaction purposes for funds flowing in and out of the TSA (Nairaland, 2015). Chukwu (2015) holds that with the implementation of the Treasury Single Account, Ministries, Agencies and Departments (MDAs) will maintain their individual accounts with the commercial banks, but daily funding of their disbursements are made from the central or main account, which is resident with the Central Bank, just as their closing balances at the end of day are transferred to the main account.

Enterprise Solutions (2015) posits that there are several TSA structures that conform to the TSA objectives, such as centralized TSA account and FGN e-Collection. Centralized TSA is based on centralized transaction processing where the treasury process transactions, access and operate TSA. All revenue and expenditure transactions of government pass through a single account generally maintained with the Central Bank. However, balances in all transaction accounts will be transfer to the TSA main account at the end of each working day. FGN e-Collection is a collection account maintained and operated by MDAs’ in CBN. It is associated with decentralized payment and accounting system; each budget institution processes its own transactions during budget execution and directly operates the respective bank account under TSA system. Request for payments are prepared by individual budget agencies and sent to a Central Treasury payment unit for control and execution and the central payment unit manages the float of outstanding invoices. Pattanayak and Fainboim (2010) opined that the custody of the TSA in most countries is with the central bank, although in theory, the main account of a TSA system may also be held at a commercial bank. In fact, there is no realistic alternative for economies without a well developed commercial banking system. In practice, the government banking arrangements may consist of several bank accounts which can be at both the central bank and commercial banks. However, the balances in commercial banks should be cleared every day and all government cash balances should be consolidated in one central account; the TSA main account of the treasury at the central bank.

Bassey (2015) holds that to beat deadline set by President Muhmmadu Buhari, over 100 Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government (MDAs) were in a rush to beat the deadline. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) made an order first on August 7, 2015 and the order was repeated with a warning on September 4th 2015, following partial compliance by the agencies. The measure is part of President Buhari’s bid to maintain accountability and stamp out corruption in the public service system. A circular issued to all MDAs of the Federal Government by the former Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Mr. Danladi Kifasi, had urged the MDAs to ensure strict compliance with the deadline to avoid sanctions. The circular dated September 4, 2015, entitled “Re: Introduction of Treasury Single Account (TSA) (e-Collection of Government Receipts)” stated: “Further to the Circular Ref. No. HCSF/428/S.1/120 of August 7, 2015 on the above subject matter, it has been observed that a number of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of the Federal Government are yet to comply with the directive therein. “In this regard, Mr. President has directed that all MDAs are to comply with the instructions on the Treasury Single Account (TSA) unfailingly by Tuesday, September 15, 2015. Heads of MDAs and other arms of government are enjoined to give this circular the widest circulation and ensure strict compliance to avoid sanctions.” The Leading MDAs that complied with the directive are; the Customs Service, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA), Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) and Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC). It is against this background that the study assessed the effects of TSA on repositioning federal government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) for sustainable development in Nigeria.