Inter-agency rivalry may frustrate FG’s data harmonization drive — Expert

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The good thought of the federal government in setting up inter-ministerial committee on harmonisation of data collection and evaluation for the country, though belated may be truncated by what development economist, Dr. Ken Igboanugo described as interagency rivalry and feelings of complex.

In an interview, the University don averred that “One of the key failures of every government in Nigeria is the inability to compel MDAs to share data information and other administrative details”.

“The idea of the government to begin the hamonisation of development statistics is suppose to be the first line charge in a ‘Change Government’, but that did not happen in the last three years.

He said from experience, several government agencies hardly corporate on issues of sharing information and that is why a lot of development planning had failed in the past.

The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, said the new data collection and hamonisation Committee would be chaired by the Statistician General of the Federation and Director-General of National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), Dr.  Yemi Kale.

According to her, the inter-ministerial committee would serve as the clearing house and focal authority for Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of the Federal Government for data collection, authentication and publication.

Adeosun further disclosed that the Committee would ensure national standards for data collection, evaluation and publication as well as regularly provide guidance to all MDAs and other stakeholders engage in data collection, analysis and publication for policy formulation, implementation and monitoring.

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According to her, “The establishment of the Inter-Ministerial Committee has become imperative to develop the production of national statistics and avoid data production duplication”.

The inter-ministerial committee is also expected to submit half-yearly reports to the Minister of Finance for necessary briefing of Mr. President.

The Committee is made of the Accountant General of the Federation, Alhaji Idris Ahmed; Director-General of the Debt Management Office, Ms. Patience Oniha; Director-General of Budget Office of the Federation, Mr. Ben Akabueze, and representatives of the Federal Ministries of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Health, Agriculture and Rural Development, Labour and Productivity, Education, Communication Technology.

Other members of the Committee are: representatives of the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Central Bank of Nigeria, Department of Petroleum Resources, Federal Inland Revenue Service, Nigeria Immigration Service, Nigerian Customs Service, National Population Commission, Nigerian Police, and Nigerian Governors Forum.

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