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FG’S DESIRE FOR FISCAL DISCIPLINE PROPELLED IT TO ALTERNATE THE PUBLIC PROCUREMENT ACT

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FG’S DESIRE FOR FISCAL DISCIPLINE PROPELLED IT TO ALTERNATE THE PUBLIC PROCUREMENT ACT                                                                                                                   10-07-24

By Sadiq Aminu                                                                    The Federal Government says its desire to ensure fiscal discipline propelled it to alterate the Public Procurement Act, now before the National Assembly for legislation.

The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Alhaji Muhammad Idris, stated this in Abuja after this week’s meeting of the Federal Executive Council, FEC.

He said the government had noted that the National Council on Procurement had not been performing effective in the last 17 years, hence the need to revisit its provisions to make it relevant.

“The whole idea is to ensure that we have a robust national council of procurements that will continue to look at all aspects of procurement, in line with the vision and to bring every project into the fiscal financial discipline that he is always talking about”, he explained.

He also said his Ministry had briefed FEC on the steps taken against Daily Trust Newspaper, on its report on the Samoa Agreement signed by the Government, including writing to industry’s own ombudsman with a view to drawing his attention about the disharmony the report has engendered.

“We expect that the industry’s ombudsman will look at that dispassionately. And the federal executive council will be patient to await the report of the Ombudsman. But suffice is to say that federal government views that report or that story by the Daily Trust Newspaper very seriously and is urging members of Nigerian press to please report responsibly in the interest of our country” the Minister said.

Alhaji Muhammad Idris said the Tinubu Administration had no intention to gag the press or to be seen in any way, walking in the way of media freedom of press freedom in this country, ensuring that the media will continue to operate in an environment that is very friendly and supportive of their work as a strong pillar for the continuous enthronement of democracy.

“There is no harm in saying you are wrong in this one, we apologise and we get it right, but we don’t expect that we will just seat down and keep quiet when government feels that what a particular newspaper has written is not in the best interest of the country”, he stressed.

Similarly, the Attorney General of the Federation, Mr. Lateef Fagbemi said the had stood down its earlier intention to seek legal redress against the newspaper until what he termed as the ‘friendly attention’ given to the its proprietor was dishonoured.

He urged media organisations to take advantage of the Freedom of Information Act to ascertain the true position of things before going public.

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