Sen. Suleiman Adokwe, Chairman, Senate Committee on Information and National Orientation has called for prudent management of funds by Chief Executives of Federal Government Media Organisations to avoid wasteful spending. Adokwe made the statement in an interview with the newsmen on Sunday in Abuja.
He said the obvious limitations of the National Budget were indicative of the fact that the era of waste had gone. “You have to be very careful not to bloat the budget with unnecessary items,” he said. He said that agencies that had the mandate to generate revenue had to be more creative to generate more revenue. “And when we generate more revenue, we will have more money to spend. Some of these things require good management. “You have to cut down your wasteful spending and direct your spending on those things that really matter that will help you to even deliver on your mandate more,’’ he said.
He said huge spending on recurrent expenditures such as tea and purchase of laptops were needless. “The annoying part is that these needless items are repeated and provisions made but never accounted for. “We are particularly concerned about the level of revenue generation by those government agencies that have the capacity to generate revenue.
We think they can do better,” he said. While Adoke agreed some of the outfits needed financial help to deliver on their mandate, he said all funds must be accounted for. He, however, said government information organs should be repositioned for better performance. “This is because there are some choices available. People can disseminate their information through other platforms like the social media and international or paid for television where they can invade every space.
“If you do not reposition sector, it would not have the capacity to compete with others favourably. On the performance of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the lawmaker said that the agency was insufficiently funded. “They do not have sufficient funding to send their members of staff around for appropriate coverage. “We were shocked to discover that they were not able to send reporters to cover the Gambian crisis in spite of the fact that Nigeria was practically leading the truce. “Even good events like AFCON football Competition, Olympics and other international engagements require converges by newsmen, but that is not the case right now,’’ he said.
“Even good events like AFCON football Competition, Olympics and other international engagements require converges by newsmen, but that is not the case right now,’’ he said. He however, noted that the Internally Generated Revenue of the agency was low, adding that the agency should step up its drive for revenue. On staff welfare, Adokwe said journalist serving in government media must be adequately catered for, adding that they were not regular civil servants.