The strategies for financial accountability in the local Government council in Nigeria (a case study of uruan local government council)
- Background of the Study
The subject financial accountability is vital to any organization been it project oriented or non-profit oriented lack of financial accountability results in embezzlement, fraud and misappropriation of public funds.
The peculiar nature of Uruan Economy has made any Topic in Accountability, financial or otherwise worth discussing. The value of our society to wealth which nobody is concern about how wealthy one is has made many people to begin to pursue wealth by all means thereby ignoring the fact that they are accountable to the public for the public funds and properties entrusted in their care.
It is due to the above mentioned problems which are associated with lack of financial accountability in any organization that has motivated the researcher to choose the “Topic” Strategies for the Accountability in Local Government Councils of Akwa Ibom State has been chosen as a Case Study in trying to discuss how effective internal Control system will help achieve financial accountability. In Nigeria, Local Government reforms have been a continuous exercise. No single regime colonial or indigenous, civil or military, that came to power passed without making attempt of reforming the local government system. The 1976 reform was part and parcel of the continuing structural adjustment of the country’s political evolution. And development on the whole 1976 reforms was a major department from the previous practice of local government administration, for it provided a uniform system throughout the country. The reform was first and foremost aimed at giving local government a definite role in the country by making it a functional third tier of government.
Uruan people are found mostly in Uruan Local Government Area in Akwa Ibom State. Uruan land covers an area of over 449km. It is bounded by Uyo Local Government Local Government Areas, Itu, Odukpani, Okobo,Oron, Eket, Ekpe Atiai. Uruan ancestors were among the Buntiod and Buntu People of East Central and South Africa, who migrated in different waves towards Western Sudan. Before they migrated to present Uruan Country (Uruan Akpeh) As a result of frequent raids and infuse of many people, Uruan tribe mend settle in the border of Congo – Garban Cameron Republics.
The Histories of Uruan Local Government Council
Uruan Local Government Council was carved out of the then Uyo Local Government Council in the year 1989. The first Chairman of the Council was late Eteobum (Dr) Bassey E. Akpan (Elected), in the year 1989. The Local Government Council before it was carved out from Uyo local government. Had three clans and their headquarter was at Idu Uruan, Southern Uruan, headquarter at Nung Ikono Ufok, and Northern Uruan with headquarter at Mbiaya Uruan. In the year 1989 when Uruan was craved out from the Uyo Local Government Council. So the Council had been headed by eight Chairman from 1989 till date which includes Eteobum (Dr.) Bassey E. Akpan (Elected), Chief Joseph Ita Essien (Elected) it Col. Ededet Bassey (caretaker), Barr. Andrew A. Okon (Elected), Chief Hogen Ben Inyang (Elected) Mrs. Robeter Nyang (Elected), Mr. Anthony Jude Akan (Elected.) and Chief Nuong Etim Udo.
The council is dominated by eight elected or appointed chairman. In the case of an elected chairman, his running mate becomes his Vice and he has the prerogative to appoint his secretary and supervisors. When appointed, the supervisors are sworn in and assigned portfolio to his Vice Chairman as well as appointed his Education Secretary. The head of personnel who is a topmost civil servant representing the State Government all the other civil servants are his subject from whom gives guidelines to the chairman particularly in matters involving finance and award of contracts. It is his duty to appoint a seasoned civil servant to record and produce minutes of all executive council meetings. Executive council meeting may be held for mightily and in most cases, an emergency meeting may be held to handle urgent matters. This is the executive arm of the council with the chairman at the other hand, his vice next and the supervisor, Administrative secretary, education secretary attending. Imperatively, the Head of personal must be there to advice on certain issues, particularly. Concerning finance and award of contracts.
The Resent Management Profile
The Head of personnel sees about the administration of the Council. Treasure, works officers health officers, Agriculture officers, and legal officer (a lawyer) are civil servant appointed to these departments. The Education Secretary is also an appointed civil servant who about all educational matters in the councils. The security department is often handle by the head of personal or the chairman, he leases with the policy and the Directors of state security service in the local government area power to approve the amount of such contracts before execution.
The Chairman and his colleagues with the Head of personal carryout the same assignment as the elected chairman who have power to appoint certain people into various committees. In case the particular tenure ended or council is sacked, all government properties are handed over to the head of personal of the spots, he or she takes over the Administration till a new Council is Sworn – in.
The Legislative Arm: This Arm is made up of elected councilors from the II Wards of Uruan of their own, the councilors elect the lender Deputy Lender, majority lender and minority lenders. Other elected officers are assigned portfolio. The clerk of the councils is a civil servant often appointed by the state government.
- Statement Of The Problem
Every policy formulated or constituted would have been a success if they are being carried out. But nowadays, adherences to planned policies by staff are the problems of policy execution are further compounded by the evolution of large organization. There is the need for an internal control system.
Internal control is such an indispensable tool in the hands of management, if he wishes to obtain and useful information, protect organizations assets and control successive operations which leads to enhancing financial accountability. The ability of any organization to enhance financial accountability depends mostly on the type and effectiveness internal control system.
Therefore, this research focuses on finding out empirically if the reference organization has installed this control system and if so how effective it is to enhance early detection of mistakes, misappropriation, embezzlement of funds, reliability of financial records and hence maintenance of financial accountability.
- objectives of the study
The aims of this research are:
- To find out if effective internal control system is a necessity for financial
- To ascertain the factors that militates against financial accountability in local government.
- To find out if there is proper segregation of duties and responsibilities all level in the local government.
- To ascertain the factors that militates against financial accountability in the local government council.
- To find out if management always adopts creative measures against any staff for fraud through secret agreement between staffs.
- Research questions
- Is effective internal control system a necessity for financial accountability?
- To what extent is financial accountability maintained in the local government system?
- Is there proper segregation of duties and responsibility at all level in the local government?
- What is the factors that militate against financial accountability in the local government?
- Does management always adopt creative measure to any staff for fraud through collusion and defalcation?
- significance of the study
Due to lack of internal control system, most people that are entrusted with public funds