The Federal Government has issued a circular for the appointment of a new and substantive Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF).

In a circular dated June 21, 2022, emanating from the Office of Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, the Federal Government said: “Following the approval of Mr President, the Office of the Head of Service of the Federation is commencing the process of the appointment of a substantive Accountant General of the Federation from eligible directors, (accountants) in the pool of Accountant General of the Federation.”

The position, according to the circular, is for those who have attained the position of substantive director on Level 17 salary grade level on or before 1st January 2020.

Sources at the Ministry of Finance said permanent secretaries had submitted several lists of eligible directors, (accountants) for consideration for the post.

It was further learnt that eligible directors in the pool of the AGF were jostling to make the list.

An unconfirmed source privy to the development said no fewer than 20 directors have also submitted applications for the top job.

Meanwhile, the circular, titled, “Commencement of the process of appointment of a substantive Accountant General of the Federation, further read in part, “All accountants in the mainstream Federal Civil Service in the pool of Accountant General of the Federation who have attained the position of substantive director (Salary Grade 17) on or before 1st January 2020 and are not retiring from the service earlier than 31st December 2024 are eligible to participate in the exercise.

“Officers undergoing disciplinary proceedings are however excluded from the exercise. Permanent Secretaries are therefore requested to forward the following to facilitate the process: list of eligible directors on SGL. 17; confidential and personal files of all eligible directors; five copies of curriculum vitae of each of the eligible directors; brief on each of the eligible directors in the attached format to be produced in Microsoft Word and in both hard ( five copies) and soft copies. Soft copies are to be sent via email to ohcsfemd@ohcsf.gov.ng and also in a flash drive.”

It added: “The documents in paragraph 4 above must reach the office of the Permanent Secretary, Career Management Office, Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Block A, 4th Floor, Federal Secretariat Complex, Phase II on or before 4:00pm on Wednesday July 6, 2022. Please bring the contents of this circular to the attention of all concerned officers.”

I t was learnt that the suspended Accountant-General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, will face a disciplinary panel after his court trial, the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria, has said.

Idris was suspended by the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, on May 18, 2022 for allegations bordering on N80bn fraud. He is being prosecuted by the EFCC.

Meanwhile, the former acting AGF, Chukwuyere Anamekwe, has been replaced by Sylva Okolieaboh, a director at the Treasury Single Account (TSA) department.

An insider said that Okolieaboh’s appointment followed an “in-house reshuffle exercise”. Following Okplieeboh’s appointment, Anamekwe was transferred to the office of the Federal Civil Service Commission, where he is currently the Director of Audit.  According to sources, Anamekwe, would be “serving his balance of days” remaining in civil service until his official retirement in October.

In May, Anamekwe was appointed amid a probe into allegations of N80 billion fraud linked to Ahmed Idris, former accountant-general of the federation.

Last month, Anamekwe claimed that Nigeria is borrowing money to pay salaries.“We have to borrow to augment payment of salaries and wages. This shows we are in very difficult times. Government income is highly challenged,” he had said. The government was said to be unsettled by his comments.

Who is Sylva Okolieaboh?

Okolieaboh is a chartered accountant and fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN).

His interests include public financial management (PFM), financial reporting, cash management/Treasury Single Account, revenue/collections management, expenditure and management internal control.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Okolieaboh said he attended numerous training and made several presentations on different components of PFM. They include Government Finance Statistics by International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington DC and Public Financial Management Reform in a Changing World by the Harvard Kennedy School, Boston MA, USA.

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