LG autonomy, overhaul of DisCos... SGF Akume lists recommendations from ministers' retreat



George Akume, secretary to the government of the federation (SGF), has listed key recommendations from the three-day retreat organised for members of President Bola Tinubu's cabinet.

The retreat with the theme: "Delivering on the renewed hope agenda" held at the State House conference centre, Abuja, from November 1 to 3.

Speaking on the last day of the event, Akume said the retreat witnessed deliberations by experts from diverse relevant fields.

He categorised recommendations made during the retreat into two sections: the "administrative processes of the government and policies and priorities for the Renewed Hope agenda."

"Over the last couple of days, we have had some very productive deliberations and heard from many experts across different fields," Akume said.

"Many of you have recommended a number of things, and we have a lot of work to be done. I will be highlighting a subset of some of the key recommendations."


Akume highlighted that cabinet members at the end of the retreat recommended that the government should raise the approval threshold for public procurement and encourage open bidding for transparency.

Other recommendations are that cabinet members should submit memos ahead of time (e.g., by EOD Wednesday) for analysis with permanent secretaries before the federal executive council (FEC) meeting.

*Improve alignment of the budget for the MDAs to the president's vision, strategic goals, and relevant key performance indicators (KPIs).

*Formulate a standardised checklist detailing appointment criteria for ministers and heads of agencies.

*Allow ministers presenting memoranda at FEC to be accompanied by their permanent secretaries to hasten information flow.

*Evaluate the efficiency of previous federal government intervention programmes and conduct proper pre- and post-project assessments to determine the efficacy of the programs.

*Improve judicial process by allowing promoted judges to complete pending cases in their new positions.*Revive the executive-legislature conference/tripartite meetings to discuss pre-budget issues ahead of time.

*Define consequences and accelerate prosecution of individuals, including lawmakers, who do not complete contracts awarded to them.


The cabinet members, according to Akume, recommended that there should be a reform of the economy to deliver sustained inclusive growth.

Other recommendations include:

*Reform tariff structure to enable trade while still supporting domestic production.

*Incorporate more equity financing rather than debt financing for fiscal operations. *Ensure the annual budget is aligned with strategic priorities.

*Review the implication of forward contracts on the economy.

* Set up a steering committee to review the issues around the national single window.

*Strengthen national security for peace and prosperity.

*Intensify efforts to block revenue leakages in the police force.

*Engage with governors to strengthen security at local government levels while addressing issues of autonomy and governance.

*Have a collaborative and collective approach at the state level to address security challenges, in collaboration with the federal government.

*Develop and facilitate effective information gathering and sharing mechanisms between and among states, communities, and the federal government.

*Prioritise the clean-up of Ogoni communities.

*Boost agriculture to achieve food security.

*Utilise technology to increase agricultural yield.

*Intensify efforts to erect the green wall to stop encroachment of deserts in northern Nigeria.

*Intensify efforts to reduce post-harvest losses by driving investments into storage and value addition.

*Embark on efforts to check coastal erosion.

*Enhance dry-season farming and promote commercial livestock farming.

*Unlock energy and natural resources for sustainable development.

*Develop a 10-year plan to increase power generation capacity in line with the country's needs.

*Set up a super grid in line with the nation's generation targets and create semi- autonomous regional grids.

*Overhaul the structure and coverage of the distribution companies.

*Revitalise a roadmap for the steel industry.

*Revive power plant projects that have been previously paused, including the Ajaokuta Steel plant.

*Engage with OPEC to increase Nigeria's crude oil production quota.

*Drive investments into the upstream petroleum sector, with clear targets while making provisions for sanctions for non-performance and inefficiencies.

*Focus on education, health, and social development as essential pillars of development.

*Open up the sports sector for businesses by attracting infrastructure, incentives, and investments.

*Accelerate the attainment of universal health coverage.

*Foster grassroots efforts to prevent and mitigate humanitarian crises.

* Improve governance for effective service delivery.

*Improve capacity by training civil servants in critical areas aligned with strategic priorities.

*Institute stepwise digitisation of all the MDAs in government.

*Invest in technology to save cost, time, and reduce corruption. *Ensure merit is the basis of the inclusivity priority.

*Ensure merit is the basis of the inclusivity priority.

*Ensure civil servants get competitive compensation.

*Roll out official emails for all civil servants above a particular level.

*Performance management to enable delivery and execution.

*Institute consequence management at all levels.

*Establish performance-based compensation for civil servants, tied to appraisal and without interferences.

*Ensure every ministry, department, and agency (MDA) defines targets for investment attraction.

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