The President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, has told ministers and his other aides not to embark on frivolous trips or lobby the National Assembly for extra-budgetary allocations any longer.
These positions were passed on to the ministers at the Federal Executive Council meeting today.
The Minister for Information, Labaran Maku, who made the position fo Jonathan on the matter known, spoke with newsmen after the FEC meeting.
Maku told the press: “Mr. President today emphasised on the need for prudence and cuts this year in expenditure.
“He has again reminded ministers on the need to cut down on foreign trips. International conferences should only be considered on the basis of their true significance to ongoing national development efforts.
“People going on those trips must reduce their delegation to cut down on unnecessary expenses.
“Again Mr. President also reminded Council that the practice where ministers will go on international conferences and commit the country to host all sorts of conferences without prior approval will not be acceptable any more.
“That is if you want to host any international conference or get any organisation to host a conference in this country from this year, you must make sure there is a budget for it.
“Often we go to conferences and organisations shift the responsibilities of hosting to us and people make commitment without due process and clearance.
“This is not to say Nigeria will not host international conferences from this year.
“But that we will do so in a planned way, not through whims where conferences are just thrown at us and the conferences often cost a lot of money to host.
“So, Mr. President directed all MDAs that they do not commit this country to hosting conferences that are not properly planned.”