Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State at the weekend disclosed that his government has discovered about 470 accounts operated in about 23 banks, leading to the recovery of N24 billion as a result of the single treasury account recently initiated.
Speaking at a town hall meeting for the Kaduna South Senatorial District in Kafanchan, the governor, who was represented by his deputy, Barnabas Bala Bantex, said the amount had been swept into a single account with the Central Bank.
“Permit me to outline where we are on the road to doing things we were elected to accomplish. We held our first executive council meeting on the 17th of August, 2015 and our 13 commissioners have since taken over the 13 ministries down from the 19 we inherited.
The government has also implemented the treasury single account to ensure that public funds are traceable and easier to audit. I ask all banks holding Kaduna State government account to close them and remit the balances to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in preparation for the single treasury account.
“It will interest all of you to know that when we came into office, it was not possible to know the number of accounts Kaduna State had. Not even the Accountant General of the state was in the position to tell us how many accounts the state was operating.
But at the end of our study, we discovered that we had no fewer than 470 accounts operated in about 23 banks. The idea of a single treasury account therefore, has brought about not only the uncovering of the account, but also the amounts in those accounts.
Those amounts have been swept into a single account with the Central Bank and that process has led us into discovery of not less than N24 billion,” he said.
He said the state government had slashed overhead costs across board by 60% as the government sought to do more with less.
“The deputy governor and I have tried to set an example by taking 50% cut in our salaries and allowances. We have also decided to save the money hitherto spent on feeding, gifts and pilgrimages as our state simply cannot afford to incur these expenses any longer and certainly not when our children in schools are sitting on the bare floors and sometimes without roof over their heads.”
He argued that they were elected to undertake fundamental reforms to change the way government works and to solve problems, noting that they were also ready to invest the resources of the state in education, security, healthcare and jobs for the teeming youths.
He said the government was conducting the second phase of the biometric verification of civil servants and urged workers to cooperate with the government as the first phase of the exercise helped the government to save N120 million.