An Economist, Mr Tope Fasua, has advised the Federal Government to shift focus from crude oil revenue and set targets for its various revenue- generating agencies to fund the 2021 budget.
Fasua, founder of a consulting firm, gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Abuja.
He said that setting revenue targets for government’s agencies would make chief executives of the agencies to run them more effectively.
“I would have loved for the president to deviate from the usual trite mention of how many barrels of crude oil government intends to sell and for how much,’’ he said.
“Basically, how much are we expecting from our various parastatals,’’? he queried.
“If government expects to generate N2 trillion in Customs duties for instance, it should come up and explain the details.
“Same applies to the Federal Inland Revenue Service, the Nigeria Ports Authority, and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, among others. Such targets will get those running the agencies to sit up and be serious.
“The fact that we are not doing that means that the government is not serious with targets and with the running of revenue-generating agencies,’’ Fasua said.
The economist advised that declining economic indices implied that the government needed to work harder to put the country on the path of economic growth.
“The fact that the GDP has declined should get us to work harder and get back to growth.
“The president himself alluded to the fact that the country could slip into recession, and we have not been inventive enough to arrest the drift.
“Our budget is still entirely an envelope budget, where MDAs are expected to submit their estimates to the budget office.
“Such a system can be easily compromised if we have corrupt officials at the budget office,’’ he said.