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REVENUE GENERATION, UTILIZATION AND GRASSROOTS TRANSFORMATION IN NIGERIA

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ABSTRACT

Revenue generation in the public sector is very important because of demand for economic development. This study examined Revenue Generation, utilization, grassroots transformation and accountability in Uyo Local Government Council. It employed descriptive and analytical approaches. A total number of forty (40) respondents out of fifty (50) were selected. Data were collected mostly from questionnaire and interview data collected, were analyzed using simple percentage while chi-square statistic was used for testing the hypotheses. The study revealed that, there is a significant relationship between revenue generation, utilization, grassroots information and accountability for any meaningful development in a local government. The study recommended strict implementation of financial regulation policies, funds control techniques, regular auditing and implementation of penalties for tax defaulters.

CHAPTER ONE

1.1    INTRODUCTORY STATEMENT

Revenue according to Buchanan, Flowes (1975:70) is defined as the money generated by the Government or any public sector to carry out its functions.  It is the amount of income received or total receipts. The main source of Government revenue generation is through taxes. It therefore has great impact on revenue base of the nation, state or even the Local Government Area. The 1976 Local Government Reform goes forth to apply that, which ever institution or Arm of Government is entrusted with the task of collection or generation and disbursement of public funds must do so in absolute respect to the laid down rules and regulations. These Local Government Reform Guidelines has guaranteed self sustained sources of revenue to the Local Government and it is captured in the forth schedule of 1999 constitution and the Joint Tax Board (JTB) harmonization of the taxes and levies schedule for the three tiers of Government (1997).  Local government as an institution is designed to provide a wide range of services; citizens and indeed all stakeholders feel that their achievement of social, economic and political aspirations depends on their involvement in the affairs of the Local Government.

Consequence to this, Local Government as preferred by Gorvine (1965), consists of those institutions of Government which are closed to the people constitutionally, legally and physically whether the Area is rural or urban. Although it is can carryout a lot of functions since it is closer to the people, only what the National or State Government permits. Local Governments and their Administration are therefore strategic in the overall macro-economic growth and development of the Nigerian economy.  Even though the National Government in the nature of things sets limit to Local Government, the functions of macro- economic growth and development, effectively and positively altering of the socio political conditions of the people at the grassroots’ are still met as the result of these third-tier of Government being nearer to the people of the grassroots’.

It is in recognition of the important role of local government administration that this project will focused on which is revenue generation, utilization, grassroots information and accountability in Uyo Local Government Council of Akwa Ibom State.

1.2    STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

The main purpose of revenue generation from the point of view of any government organization is to raise funds to provide essential, social and economic amenities.  As money is the life wire of all types of development, fiscal management which in those operators designed to make funds available to officials and to cause lawful and efficient use becomes a problem. The principal fiscal functions connected with the receipts and disbursement of public funds includes budgeting, safeguarding and disbursing of funds in line with goals and various constraints and problems which coupled with failure to comply with regulation governing the collection, accountability of public funds by Uyo Local Government Council.

1.3    RESEARCH AIM AND OBJECTIVES

The Reform Local Government System in Nigeria is relatively new and has been done to study its lapses and problems in the area of revenue generation, utilization and accountability. Therefore, objectives of the study are were as follows;

1.      To identify the sources of revenue as approved by the statutes and other Instruments in Uyo Local Government.

2.      To Find out how revenue is being generated and controlled in Uyo Local Government Council.

3.      To determine the extend to which the generated revenue has been utilized to meet its respective purposes.

4.      To pin-point potential problems limiting effective revenue generation and accountability and to make recommendations on how to control these problems.

1.4    RESEARCH QUESTIONS

1.      What is the usefulness of revenue collected from the tax money by the Local Government?

2.      What are the sources of revenue generation available in the Local Government?

3       What could be the problems associated with the revenue

collection and Administration in the Local Government?

1.5    RESEARCH HYPOTHESES

1.      There is a significant relationship between payment of tax and the non-chalant attitude to work by revenue collectors.

2.      There is a significant relationship between revenue generated and the project implemented in Uyo Local Government.

3.      There is a significant disparity between revenue generated internally by Uyo Local Government through tax and the income or grant from both the State and Federal Government.

1.6    SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

The significance of this research work is as follows:

1.      It is hoped that the findings in this study will generate useful input to other Local Governments to evolve strategies and fund control techniques to ensure judicious use of Councils’ funds and resources.

2.      It will be an eye - opener to public servant within the confine of Local Government employment to work harder, appreciate financial management policies and procedure, and improve their effectiveness and efficiency in administration as it plays a vital role in the! developmental growth of any Local Government.

3.      The study will motivate other government ministries, parastatals and agencies in charge of local government supervision to ensure strict compliance with laid down guidelines and procedures for revenue generation and disbursement.

4.      The study would also expose those sources of revenue not well explored in terms of revenue generation.

5.      The study will serve as a reference material for other researchers and interested parties.

1.7    SCOPE AND LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY

This research project will be limited external and internal sources of revenue accruing to Uyo Local Government as well as the aspect of accountability that has to do with controlling of these sources of funds and its utilization. This study only cover the period of 2005 and 2006 fiscal year as the result of the following constraints and problems

FINANCIAL CONSTRAINT: - In view of the economic situation in the country, it often difficulty to meet the financial objectives in a research project of this nature. Consequently, this study is limited to Uyo Local Government Council due to the limited financial resources at our disposal

TIME FACTOR: - A tangible research work will normally require a number of years for completion but that is not applicable here. The time constraints not withstanding, could say, I have been able to delve into required facts of this research that would make this project a useful material for any mature research that could be carried out in this Local Government.

1.8    ASSUMPTIONS

In this study, it is assumed that several factors contribute to the inability of Uyo Local Government to undertake infrastructural  development in its area of jurisdiction. These include poor revenue generation owing to irregular or non payment of taxes and rates and fraudulent disposition of revenue collectors.

1.9    DEFINITION OF TERMS USED IN THE STUDY

ACCOUNTABILITY: - Howard J.et al, (1999). Accountability has to do with a system f& ensuring proper stewardship of assets which involves a legal and word liability for ensuring that public funds are used for public ends and purposes and that the best value is obtained for money spent.

REVENUE: - According to Buchanan, Flowes (1975,p.70), Revenue is defined as the money generated by the government or any public sector to carry out its functions. It is the amount of income received or total receipts. The source of internally and externally generated revenue varies from one council to another.

CONTROL: - This refers to the institutionalization of administrative and statutory measures to ensure that appropriate Funds are spent according to laid down rules and regulations, minimizing of waste, checking dishonesty and extravagance and the promotion of economy and effectiveness in the conduct of the financial activities of government.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT: - In the words perceives Local Government as “that Nation or State which deals mainly with people of a particular place”.

The 1976 Local Government reform conceives Local Government as government at the Local level examined through representatives council established by law to exercise specific powers within defined areas.  For the purpose of this research therefore, a local Government can be implied to be a unit of government established by act of law to administer the function of government and see to the welfare and interest of the Local dwellers under the Local Government system.

FEES: - Derek (1983:72) defines fee as “the amount of money charged for service rendered”.

GENERATION: - Hunby et al (1972: 77) defines generation as “the bringing or causing something to exist or occur”. Therefore to define generation to suit the study as follows: - it is the bringing of revenue into existence.

CHARGES: - Derek (1972: 78) defines charges as “the price demanded for services of goods”.

RATE: - This is defined as tax of property (land and building) paid to local authority for local purposes.

RENT: - It is a regular payment for land and building utilization: - it is to use or making use of something especially for a practical purpose.

1.10  HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

Uyo is the state capital of Akwa Ibom, a major oil producing state of Nigeria. The town became the capital of the state on September 23, 1987 following the creation of Akwa Ibom State from erstwhile Cross River State. The University of Uyo resides in this town. The population of Uyo, according to the 2006 Nigerian Census which comprises Uyo and Itu, is 427,873 while the urban area, including Uruan is 554,906.

The city can be accessed by road via the A342 highway, as well as Abak Road, Nwaniba Road, Itu Road, Oron Road, Idoro Road and Aka Road. Nearby airports include the Akwa Ibom International Airport at Okobo and Margaret Ekpo International Airport, Calabar.

Uyo is a fast-growing city as it has witnessed some infrastructural growth in the past nine years. It has an intensive network of roads such as the IBB Way, Atiku Abubakar Avenue, Udo Udoma Avenue, Nsikak Eduok Avenue and Edet Akpan Avenue which is an eight-land superhighway and currently the widest road in Uyo.

Transportation in Uyo mainly by tricycles, popularly known as Keke in the urban areas and motor bike called Alaluk in Ibibio in the rural areas like interior villages. Uyo is home to many notable housing districts such as the Ewet Housing Estate, Osongama Estate and Shelter Afrik. The city of Uyo is notably neat and hospitable to foreigners and its aborigines. Highbrow residential areas in Uyo include the prestigious Ewet Housing Estate, Osongama Estate, Shelter Afrik and a host of other choice areas in the town and its environs. The city boasts recreational areas such as the Ibom Connection popularly known as “Ibom Plaza” and the prestigious Le Meridien Ibom Hotel & Golf Resort.

Uyo is home to the University of Uyo, formerly known as the University of Cross River State. Its name was changed in 1991, when the government of Nigeria established it as a Federal University. This school has various campuses in Uyo such as Town Campus and Annex Campus in Ikpa Road, Permanent Site/Main Campus in Nwaniba Road, UYTH/Medical Campus at Abak Road and Ime Umana Campus at Ediene-Abak.

1.11 ORGANIZATION OF THE STUDY

This project is organized into five chapters. Chapter one introduces this study, gives the nature of the problem, statement of the problem, research objectives, the significance, scope and limitations of the study, the assumptions and definition of terms used are also highlighted in the chapter with the historical background to the area of study of the research before the organization of the study.

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