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5 Rules governing the Management and Control of Public finance in Nigeria

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 Legal Management and control of public finance in Nigeria

The operation of government financial system are based on legal framework which include the constitution laws made by the legislature, relations, circular letter, customs and accepted norms of behaviour. Implicit in the above Assertion is that financial operations of government are derived from laid down laws and regulations and which must be strictly adhered to;


1. THE CONSTITUTION

Section 80 of the 1999 constitution specifies that all monies received or raised by the  federation shall be paid into one consolidated revenue fund of the federation. 

It went further  to state that no money shall be withdrawn from the fund to meet any expenditures except authorised by the appropriation act.

Appropriation Act means law authorising the spending of money in a year's budget often passed by the national assembly. It enacted each year for the appropriation of public finances for services to be rendered during the year to which it applies.


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The constitution in section 162 also directs that all monies is meant to be shared to the three types of government to be kept in an account called the federation account.

It could therefore be seen from the foregoing that the constitution has given direction on how monies is collected on behalf of the government should be handled and on what authority the money should be expanded.


2. FINANCIAL REGULATION (FR)

The financial regulation FR is a document often bound in a book form, which contains a body of guiding principle, rules and codes, which specify the way and manner in which certain financial transactions are to be recorded, treated or undertaking.

It is intended to ensure uniformity in the treatment of government financial transactions. 

If FR is a body of rules, it means that part of its provisions specifies actions that are deemed acceptable and those that are not acceptable.


It further means that the rules should not be varied under any guise or circumstance.

 Examples of these rules are those dealing with opening of bank account, collection of revenue, purchase of accounting machine and equipment by ministries and departments.


3. FINANCE CIRCULARS AND CIRCULAR LETTEES.

The use of circular letters is administrative way of issuing periodic guidelines to all concerned on the operation of Government finance and other businesses.

The most important aspect of this cycle is include their used in amending the existing provisions of the financial regulation. It could also be used in interpreting ambiguous provisions in the circulars and for introducing a new policy and guidelines before inclusion in the FR.


4. FINANCE ACT 1958

This is an act of Parliament passed in 1958 and whose provisions are still relevant today insofar as it does not conflict with any constitutional provisions. The heart regulates the form to be adopted in The preparing and presentation of public financial statements and information. It also gives direction on the type of investments government should undertake such as interest from bank saving, treasury bills, etc.


5. AUDIT ACT 1956

The Act in collaboration with section 85 of 1999 constitution covers the appointment of the auditor general of the federal and the auditor of Federal Government finances. The auditor-general is a civil servant he is empowered to have access to all the books and records and to examine and report on the finance of all offices and courts of the federation and submit same to National assembly. In the exercise of his functions, the constitution stipulates that he shall not be subjected to the directions or control of any authority or person.


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