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Highlights of Federal Executive Council Decisions on Monday 26 February

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By Bayo Onanuga

Here are some of the highlights of the far reaching decisions taken today at the Federal Executive Council meeting, chaired by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

  1. FEC approved construction of Lagos-Port Harcourt-Calabar Coastal Superhighway to Messrs Hitech Construction Africa. The First phase made up of 47 kms will begin in Lagos.
  2. Social security payments to the vulnerable households to begin immediately. Recipients will be those with NIN and BVN.
  3. Social security payments to be extended to graduates from NCE and upwards
  4. Consumer Credit to be established very urgently. Chief of Staff to lead a committee that includes Budget Minister, Attorney-General, Coordinating Minister of the Economy and Finance, to make the scheme a reality.
  5. The Council in order to enhance efficiency in the Federal service, and reduce the cost of governance, decided to implement the recommendations of the Steve Oronsaye panel on the restructuring and rationalisation of Federal agencies, parastatals and commissions.
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The implementation involves merging, subsuming and scrapping agencies with similar functions.

The Oronsaye report was submitted in 2012 to the Jonathan administration. In 2014, the Jonathan government released a white paper on the report. The Buhari administration after re-examining the white paper also released a second white paper in August 2022, but did not implement the report.

However, the Tinubu administration has decided to confront the monster of high governance cost by implementing elements of the report.

An eight-man committee has a 12-week deadline to ensure that the necessary legislative amendments and administrative restructuring needed to implement the reforms are effected in an efficient manner.

The committee comprises Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Head of the Civil Service, Attorney General and Justice Minister, Budget and Planning Minister, DG Bureau of Public Service Reform, Special Adviser to the President on Policy Coordination, Special assistant to the president on National Assembly. The Cabinet Affairs Office will serve as the secretariat.

Key recommendations for implementation:

National Salaries, Income and wages Commission to be subsumed under Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission. The National Assembly will need to amend the constitution as RMAFC was established by the constitution.

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Infrastructure Concession and Regulatory Commission to be merged with Bureau of Public Enterprise and be rechristened as `Public Enterprises and Infrastructural Concession Commission

National Human Rights Commission to swallow Public Complaints Commission

Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) to be scrapped and functions to be taken over by Federal Ministry of Finance

NEMA and National Commission for Refugees to be fused to become National Emergency and Refugee Management Commission

Border Communities Development Agency to become a department under National Boundary Commission

NACA and NCDC to be merged

SERVICOM to become a department under the Bureau for Public Service Reform(BPSR)

NALDA to return to the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security.

Federal Ministry of Science to supervise a new agency that combines NCAM, NASENI and PRODA

National Commission for Museums and Monuments and National Gallery of Arts to become one entity that will be known as National Commission for Museums, Monuments and Gallery of Arts.

National Theatre to be merged with National Troupe.

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Directorate of Technical Cooperation in Africa and Directorate of Technical Aid Corp to be merged under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Nigerians in Diaspora Commission to become an agency under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Federal Radio Corporation and Voice of Nigeria to be one entity to be known as Federal Broadcasting Corporation of Nigeria National Biotechnology Development Agency(NABDA) and National Centre for Genetic Resources and Biotechnology to be emerged into an agency to be known as National Biotechnology Research and Development Agency(NBRDA).

National Institute for Leather Science Technology and National Institute for Chemical Technology to become one agency.

Nigeria Natural Medicine Development Agency and National Institute of Pharmaceutical Research and Development to become one agency.

The National Metallurgical Development Centre and National Metallurgical Training Institute will be merged.

National Institute for Trypanosomiasis to be subsumed under Institute of Veterinary Research in Vom, Jos.

Investments And Securities Tribunal (IST) will be merged with Securities And Exchange Commission (SEC)..

The list is not exhaustive.

Bayo Onanuga is the Special Adviser Information and Strategy to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu