Budget defence: Appropriation C’ttee Closes Collation Of Reports | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Budget defence: Appropriation C’ttee Closes Collation Of Reports

Posted: Feb 27, 2016 at 6:49 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

*To take over budget of defaulting c’ttees
Ahmed Musa, Abuja
The House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation on Friday closed all activities on collation of budget reports from chairmen of sub-committees with a threat of making decisions on allocation of funds to Ministries Departments and Agencies on which committees failed to present their reports before the Friday deadline.
Chairman of Appropriation committee, Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin (APC, Kano) while briefing newsmen at the closing of the report collation exercise in Abuja stated that since the March deadline remains sacrosanct, the committee must also stick to the Friday ultimatum for presentation of reports.
He added that committees which failed to present and submit their report by Friday would have the decision to appropriate for MDAS under their oversight taken for them by the Appropriation Committee which would in turn present same to the House for final passage.
Jibrin said: “If not that the Senate delayed us for a week, we would have been done with this process before now, and I expected our colleagues to take advantage of that delay by expediting action on their reports, but as it stands, we are likely to take that decision for them”.
Several committees made presentations on Friday including Emergency Management and Disaster Preparedness whose Deputy Chairman, Hon. Ali Isah, told the harmonisation committee that they took the initiative of increasing the budget for the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) from N1.3billion to over N2billion.
He said the increase was necessary due to the agency’s cry for adequate fund and therefore appealed for improving appropriation.
He said: “After exhaustive deliberation and harmonisation with the Senate committee, it was agreed that over N900million be added to the agency due to the peculiarity of its mandate and to enable it meet its responsibility of mitigating disaster and and enhance preparedness”.
It was however observed that what was contained in the hard copy regarding the additional 900million was not reflected in the soft copy. The Chairman
Appropriation directed that the correction be effected with the opinion that NEMA is poorly funded and needs to be reconsidered.
Hon. Beni Lar also presented report on behalf of the committee on Science and Technology wherein she said a total of N25.8billion for the Ministry.
She said the joint committee observed a shortfall of over N2billion and contended that it would pose great challenge to the Ministry if the shortfall was not augmented by the Finance Ministry.
She added that capital allocation of 27bilion represents slightly 50percent of the total budget, adding that if the budget as proposed is approved, science and tech will become the driver of the nation’s economy going by the role it would play in creating wealth for the masses.
She said the upward review done by her committee was aimed at enhancing the capacity of the ministry to help diversify the economy.