During the last-minute checks on the 2016 budget the members of the National Assembly have reportedly discovered 25 fresh errors, before the passage into law of the appropriation bill. The items involved are allocated about N37, 025, 238, 407 in total.
Chairman of the senate committee on appropriation, Senator Danjuma Goje, and the chairman of the house committee on appropriation, Hon Jibrin Abdulmumin, were making frantic efforts Wednesday night to meet next Tuesday’s deadline for the passage of the budget.
The Nation reports that of the amount, about N21,623,323,649 was voted for office repairs which has now been classified as “avoidable” by the Senate and House of Representatives committees on Appropriation.
The errors identified have to do with duplication of budget line items; budget items with quantities not specified; budget items with no location; large amount of money being appropriated for rehabilitation/repairs of office /residential buildings and purchase of office furniture and fittings; budget items repeated over the past four years; curious budget line items; non-priority budget items; and wrongly classified budget items.
The committees were also said to have drawn the attention of the ministry of Budget and National Planning to the fresh errors.
“The National Bureau of Statistics projected to spend N256, 920,000 and N230, 705, 000 in the same budget on procurement of equipment, vehicles and furniture. At our session, we were amazed that we could still be having two estimates for the same project. Also, the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) is planning to execute Integration of Road Reference System with N150, 940,000 (FERMA 18015998) and N15,000, 000 (FERMA 18021621) respectively,” the document stated.
A document obtained from the National Assembly lists the breakdown of the errors, including curious budget line items (N6, 411,661, 956); duplication of projects(N3,567,605, 395); non-priority project items (N5, 422, 647,407); office repairs/rehabilitation(N21, 623, 323, 649).
For 2016, the OSGF has budgeted N1, 710, 322, 610 for procurement and installation of security system. The same office budgetted the following amounts in the last three years on the same item: N527, 000,000(2013); N1, 161, 356, 582(20140 and N316, 420, 274(2015)
“From the budget, we have discovered that the vote for the generation of 700 MW from Zungeru hydropower project was duplicated seven times and titled MOPWH161021632-40. For the same project, the amounts voted are as follows N750m, N113, 465, 000, N139, 426, 180, N126, 624, 383, N93, 767, 500 and N160, 000, 000.
The document added “With due respect to SGF Babachir Lawal, we have realised that those in charge of the budget of OSGF might have committed blunders.
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