President Muhammadu Buhari has directed all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to submit their Yearly Travel Plans to the OSGF and/or the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation for clearance.
The new policy, he stated would be implemented immediately. The new policy is contained in a statement signed by the Director Information OSGF, Mr. Willie Bassey.
The President in the statement stated that the directive was part of measures to curb leakages and ensure efficiency in the management of government resources.
“According to the directive as contained in a statement by the Director Information OSGF, Mr. Willie Bassey, “Henceforth, all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) are required to submit their Yearly Travel Plans for statutory meetings and engagements to the OSGF and/or the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation for express clearance within the first quarter of the fiscal year, before implementation
“They are further required to make their presentation using the existing template and also secure approvals on specific travels as contained in the plan, from the appropriate quarters,”
The directive also stated that the nature and frequency of the travels, on all public funded travels (local and foreign), must be strictly for official purposes, backed with documentary evidence.
“In this regard, all foreign travels must be for highly essential statutory engagements that are beneficial to the interest of the country. Except with the express approval of Mr. President, Ministers, Permanent Secretaries, Chairmen of Extra-Ministerial Departments, Chief Executive Officers and Directors are restricted to not more than two (2) foreign travels in a quarter, ”the statement also said.
It continued, “Also, when a Minister is at the head of an official delegation, the size of such delegation shall not exceed four, including the relevant Director, Schedule Officer and one Aide of the Minister. Every other delegation below ministerial level shall be restricted to a maximum of three,” the statement reads in part.
For class of air travels, the statement directed that for Class of Air Travels, the President has approved that Ministers, Permanent Secretaries, Special Advisers, Senior Special Assistants to the President, Chairmen of Extra-Ministerial Departments and Chief Executive Officers of Parastatals who are entitled, to continue to fly Business Class while other categories of public officers are to travel on Economy Class.
The directive stated that travel days would no longer attract payment of Estacode Allowances as duration of official trips shall be limited to only the number of days of the event as contained in the supporting documents to qualify for public funding, adding that the Auditor-General of the Federation had been directed to treat all expenditures that contravene these guidelines as ineligible.