Govt Must Be Accountable To The People – Dikki

Govt Must Be Accountable To The People – Dikki
October 09 05:34 2014 Print This Article
Director General, Bureau of Public Enterprises, Mr. Benjamin Dikki

Director General, Bureau of Public Enterprises, Mr. Benjamin Dikki

The Director General, Bureau of Public Enterprises, Mr. Benjamin Dikki has said that governments worldwide are responsible for the development of their nations “because they are custodians of the collective resources of the people and these resources are held in trust, therefore, the various governments ought to give account to the people to justify the confidence reposed on them.”

The Director General noted that “Governments ought to owe the ultimate owners of the resources an explanation on how the resources have been used in developing the people.”

The Director General opined that according to sections 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 and 24, of the 1999 constitution, for development to take place, the State must guarantee the security of life and property, that the State must guarantee education to the people, the State must provide healthcare to the people, the State must preserve and sustain the environment, the State must preserve the culture of the people amongst others.
The BPE boss explained that the role of accountability in governance is to build confidence and trust between it and the citizenry in order to optimise the use of resources through dialogue and consultation and meeting of the actual needs of the people.

He pointed out that to accountability will further encourage the practice and culture of financial and systems checks and balances that would ensure consistent good behavior of those entrusted with our collective resources from one generation to another and to also ensure public understanding of government policies and support for them insisting that the BPE has played a major in enthroning accountability and good governance in the country.

Dikki in highlighted some of the methods used to include: formation of Pencom which ensured accountability of staff pension deductions which he said accounts for over N4 trillion in stable deposits now ready for development investment.

The Formation of the Debt Management Office which resulted in the continued determination of Nigeria’s total external borrowings and made a concrete case for debt cancellation and rescheduling, Formation of the EFCC that has increased accountability and has  assisted in reducing theft of government funds now freed for development and has secured the conviction of many corrupt officials.

The Deregulation of the telecom sector and the participation of private telecom companies like MTN, Glo, Airtel, Etisalat, Visafone, which has opened the sector. and accounting to statistics, Nigeria has over 123 million active telephone lines compared to 450,000 lines before the reform.  The sector now employs over 1 million Nigerians and has attracted over $40billion in investments.

The unbundling of PHCN into 18 successor companies and the successful privatization of the Electric Power Sector. This has taken the power sector out of government budget and now we can calculate the revenue shortfalls in the power market. The concession of the various sea ports had taken them off government budget and the private sector has made massive investments that government could not have contemplated. Today, the quantum of cargo has increased tremendously due to the comparative improvement in processing time.

He however maintained that in order to sustain accountability and good government Nigeria needed to do more to sustain accountability and good governance.

According to the BPE boss, the must be a sustained value re-orientation with emphasis on the fight against Indiscipline and corruption, Conservation of the Environment as a critical resource for development, Development of entrepreneurship and reduction of unemployment, Improvement in Security and its perception, Improvement of communication between the leadership and the led.

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