Senate begins process of merging federal agencies

Senate in mix-up over Armed Forces Service Commission Bill

The Nigerian Senate may soon begin the process that will lead to the merging of some federal agencies in line with its determination to cut cost and prevent duplication of roles.

The red chamber had last week expressed concern about the alarming number of the Federal Government agencies, arguing that many of them had outlived their usefulness.

The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, had promised that the 9th Senate under his leadership would collaborate with the executive arm of government to see how some of the over 600 federal agencies could be merged.

The Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Adedayo Adeyeye, explained this to newsmen that the Senate would start the process by reviewing the laws that established the agencies.

He said, “It is when the Senate looks at the various acts of parliament that created the agencies that we could determine the steps to take.”

Also explaining how the Senate would achieve its aim of merging the agencies, the president of the Senate said the relevant committees of the upper chamber would soon be asked to review the acts that established them.

Lawan said, “There is the urgent need to review the acts that establish the various agencies of the Federal Government.  We have over 600 of such agencies. Many of them have outlived their usefulness.

“Some of them were set up to address some emerging issues at that time; today,  those issues are no longer there. Such agencies are still being funded and they are getting regular budgetary allocations, yet they hardly add any value.

“The time has come for our committees to look into acts of all the agencies that we have under their supervision.

“The committees are expected to see which of the agencies are still relevant and see how to make them more effective and efficient.

“However,  when an agency has outlived its usefulness, we should be considering streamlining such an agency.”