Northern Nigerian Breaking News

From Jonathan to Tinubu: Will any Nigerian president ever implement the Oronsaye report? Here’s what we found

On Monday, February 25, President Bola Tinubu ordered the implementation of the Stephen Oronsaye report that called for a leaner government by merging some agencies and scrapping some others.

“Twelve years after the Steve Oronsaye panel submitted its report on restructuring and rationalizing Federal government parastatals and agencies and a white paper issued two years after, President Tinubu and the Federal Executive Council today decided to implement the report. Many agencies will be scrapped and many others will be merged, to pave the way to a leaner government,” a presidential spokesperson, Bayo Onanuga, said in a post on X.

Speaking with state house correspondents after Monday’s meeting of the Federal Executive Council (FEC), the Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, said some Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) would be scrapped, merged or subsumed into relevant organisations of government.

He explained that the aim was only to cut costs and not to throw Nigerians into the labour market.


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In 2011, former President Goodluck Jonathan set up the presidential committee on the reformation of government agencies chaired by Steven Oronsaye, a former Head of Service of the Federation.

Its terms of reference included, among others, examining the enabling Acts and mandates of all the federal agencies, parastatals, and commissions to determine areas of overlap or duplication of functions.

READ ALSO: JUST IN: Tinubu orders immediate implementation of Oronsanye report

The committee, in its report, recommended that of the 541 Statutory and Non-Statutory Federal Government Parastatals, Agencies and Commissions, 263 statutory agencies should be reduced to 161, 38 agencies should be abolished, 52 agencies should be merged, and 14 should revert to departments in ministries. 

While the government accepted the recommendations, they were not implemented until the Jonathan administration left office in 2015.

From Jonathan 

In April 2014, Jonathan directed the then Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim and  ex-Head of Service of the Federation, Alhaji Boni Aji, to constitute the committee for implementation. 

Ex-Information Minister Labaran Maku said Jonathan issued the directive at the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting, as the committee would work on the merger of the agencies and parastatals already marked for merger.

He said the president assured the council that the government would be moving fast in implementing the 105-page White Paper to cut costs, ensure efficiency and enhance productivity in the civil service.

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“You’d recall that the White Paper on the Oronsaye report on the restructuring of agencies has already been publicised. The president said we’ll be moving ahead quickly in the implementation of the document because his administration is very serious in bringing down the cost of governance and ensuring more efficiency.  He has therefore directed the SGF and the Head of Service to put up a committee for his approval to work on the merger of the agencies that have been marked for merger to cut costs and make them more effective,” the minister said.

In the White Paper, the government endorsed the recommendation of the merger of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET). The three aviation parastatals will be fused into a new agency to be known as the Federal Civil Aviation Authority; while their respective enabling laws would be amended accordingly to reflect the merger. According to the document, the government has also approved the scrapping of the National Poverty Eradication Programme (NAPEP) and the Fiscal Responsibility Commission (FRC).


In April 2020, ex-President Muhammadu Buhari also approved the implementation of a report submitted by the presidential committee on restructuring and rationalization of federal government parastatals, commissions and agencies during the Goodluck Jonathan administration.

Zainab Ahmed, ex-minister of finance, budget and national planning, told Channels TV that the president’s approval has been forwarded to the head of civil service and secretary to the government of the federation.

“The president has approved that this administration should implement the Oransanye report,” Ahmed said. “It has reviewed the size of the government and has made very significant recommendations in terms of reducing the number of agencies and that would mean merging some agencies.”

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“This is a report that has been in place for a long time and there hasn’t been implementation but the president has approved that this should be implemented and we have conveyed Mr President’s approval to the arms of government that are responsible for this and that will be the office of the secretary of government and the head of civil service of the federation.”

And Tinubu 

SolaceBase understands that the implementation ordered by President Tinubu follows a pattern of what two former presidents had said without any actual implementation. 

Even as the discussion on the implementation of the report was ongoing, the National Assembly and successive governments have created more agencies and institutions, increasing the cost of governance.

Recall that even Tinubu was under attack by Nigerians over the appointment of 50 ministers, as many said he is not willing to reform the civil service. He also embarked on some frivolous budgetary expenses, allocating N344 billion to the National Assembly in the 2024 budget and spending billions on the renovation of his official residence. 

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