By AUSTIN OWOICHO, Abuja
The All Progressives Congress (APC) has commended President Muhammadu Buhari’s approval of the immediate implementation of sweeping cost saving measures aimed at instilling financial discipline and prudence, particularly on government trips.
This was contained in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu
Also, the party welcomed the presidential directive to ministers and other heads of government agencies to suspend foreign travels and defend their budgets before the National Assembly.
“This will not only foster legislative-executive relations but also ensure that budget passage is speedy and returned to the January-December cycle.
“This is another fulfillment of the president’s election promise to cut the costs of governance, curb leakages, end impunity and ensure adherence to the rule of law by all departments of government.
“To list a few of the approved measures to instill financial discipline and prudence on government trips, all public funded trips must be strictly for official purposes and must be backed with documented evidence.
“The classes of tickets approved for government officials on official trips have been clearly spelt out. In effect, Ministers, Permanent Secretaries, Special Advisers, Senior Special Assistants to the President, Chairmen of Extra-Ministerial Departments and Chief Executive Officers of Parastatals are allowed to fly Business Class. Other categories of Public Officers are to travel on Economy Class.
“Government will no longer fund extended stays. Duration of official trips is limited to only the number of days of the event as contained in the supporting documents to qualify for public funding.
“Clearly, the era of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s governments when ministers and other senior government appointees splashed our commonwealth on private jet trips, first class tickets and limousines to ferry family and cronies around are over. Our public resources are now being rightly deployed to address our national infrastructure needs, social investments and other initiatives that directly benefits the people.
“The APC administration remains resolute in fulfilling its promises to the people of Nigeria.”