According to the Efficiency Unit of the Federal Ministry of Finance, government’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies spent a total of N825bn on travels, maintenance, local and international training, welfare and office stationery/computer consumables between 2012 and 2014.

Also, the average amount expended annually on the five items during the period was N275bn, while the estimates for 2015 show a continuation of the trend.

Ms Patience Oniha, the Head of the Efficiency Unit on Wednesday said, “The cumulative expenditure on these five items was N825bn, representing 61 per cent of the cumulative total overhead expenditure of N1,353bn for 2012 to 2014.

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“This means that the average amount expended annually on these five items during this period was N275bn. The estimates for 2015 shows a continuation of this trend. Overhead spending exceeded allocations to capital in all the years reviewed.

“Another finding from the review was the large expenditure on honoraria and sitting allowances, refreshment and meals, books, fuel, publicity and adverts.”

The unit head mentioned that price discounts can be easily acquired if the MDAs pool their requests together.

She said, “Developed countries such as the USA, UK, Canada and Hong Kong have used this strategy successfully to manage their expenditure. Within Nigeria, large and diversified private sector organisations manage their procurement in a similar manner.

Finally, she added that with the support of the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, the unit would pursue the implementation of its recommendations to deliver cost savings to the government.