From Victor Duruamaku – Owerri
The present administration of Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha in Imo state has commenced what it described as an open budget system geared towards bringing accoubtability to the people of the state.
This was disclosed yesterday by the state Commissioner for budget and economic planning, Mr. Reginald Ihebuzor while interacting with journalists in his office.
He explained the need for Imo citizens to know their state budget system, adding that it makes also for transparency and accountability.
The commissioner revealed that for the past years of the life of the former Governor Okorocha’s administration in the state, Imo people had been put in the dark about the budget system and the result of the audits of the state Government accounts.
He went further to say that, unlike the past administration, the present administration of Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha has resolved to always maintain the policy of transparency and accountability in the running of the Government business.
The commissioner recalled that for the past years, “The past administration has not been releasing the state audited accounts”.
He revealed further that from last Friday his office has engaged the office of Auditor General to look at the accounts of the past years of 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.
The commissioner directed the budget office of his ministry to go ahead and make public the accounts of these past years, so that Imo citizens will know what was been budgeted for and how their funds have been spent.
He claimed that this system works for easy auditing, as the audited accounts are being released to the public, pointing out that’s why we have not been releasing our audited accounts for past years, just like
the former Governor Rochas Okorocha had done during his time, was because he “Rochas” has operated a lot of fiscal issues under secrecy for the purpose of his appropriating the state fund.
According to him, “Imo people can now see what we are doing as we have now started work on the 2020 budget”. Adding, “Our budget system is now open, unlike during the days of former Governor Rochas Okorocha”.
He emphatically said that the office is making the budget system open and transparent, so that Imo people would know what the audited accounts are like, explaining further that the implication of this openness is that Imo people will follow the state budget system and its expenditure.
Imo people he believed would now follow and understand the budget and the budgetary system, which is in line with the present Governor’s policy of Openness, transparency and accountability.
For a better society