By Ignatius Okorocha
The Senate has confirmed the appointment of Mr. Aghughu Adolphus Arhotomhenla as Auditor-General for the Federation.
The confirmation of the nominee followed after the consideration of a report by the Committee on Public Accounts.
Chairman of the Committee, Senator Matthew Urhogide said the Committee was impressed by the qualifications of the nominee and found him competent to take on the responsibilities of the office.
President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, in his remarks, called on the Federal Government to create the necessary wherewithal to improve on the working operations of the office of the Auditor-General to give a boost to the fight against corruption.
According to the Senate President, providing the required support to the office of the Auditor-General for the Federation would not only guarantee effectiveness and efficiency, but ensure the successful fight against corruption in the country.
Lawan in his remarks said, “The National Assembly – the Parliament – and the Executive must ensure that the Auditor-General remains truly autonomous and independent.
“We achieved so much by giving the Auditor-General a financial autonomy which he requires.
“But I think we can do better as a government. The headquarters or the Audit House where the Auditor-General with some of his staff work is still not a befitting headquarters for the Auditor-General for the federation.
“The Auditor-General needs office accommodation like the Treasury House, or the EFCC Complex where he can accommodate all his staff, and all he needs to do is to post them out to go the MDAs and carry out their auditing jobs and return.
“A practice where some of the Auditors are resident in organizations they are supposed to audit is not acceptable. We need to do a lot more to support the Auditor-General for the Federation to be more effective and efficient.
“Actually, with the an effective Auditor-General, you may not even need EFCC or ICPC, and if you need them, they cannot take precedence over the Auditor-General which it appears is the case today.
“All of us believe in fighting corruption, we should work to improve the office and operations of the Auditor-General for the Federation,” Lawan said.