The Senate and House Joint Committee on Appropriation has detected fresh errors in the 2016 budget, The PUNCH reports. It was gathered that the errors were responsible for the failure of the committee to present its report to the two chambers of the National Assembly on Wednesday as it had promised. It was learnt that one of the anomalies detected was in the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, where provisions had been made for procurement and installation of security systems every year since 2013.
For example, in 2013, the sum of N527,000,000 was budgeted for the item; in 2014, N1,161,356,582 was allocated to the same item; in 2015, N316,420,274 was budgeted for it; and N1,710,322,610 is to be spent on the procurement and installation of security system in the SGF office in 2016. The committee also detected items without project locations in the Ministry of Works, Power and Housing (headquarters). Such projects include the construction of a block of three classrooms at the cost of N85,592,483; construction of a maternity centre for N91,124,858; and the allocation of N172,623,767 for the building of skill acquisition centres.
It was also learnt that the committee also discovered anomalies in the allocation of large amounts of money for the rehabilitation and repair of office buildings as well as purchase of office items and fittings. Not less than N21bn was allocated to such repairs and purchase at the Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the government. The committee also detected duplication of items. For example, N2.3bn was earmarked for former heads of state in the service wide vote of the Ministry of Budget and Planning, while N400,190,000 was allocated to the affairs of the former heads of state in the SGF office. Other examples of duplication include allocation of N256,920,000 for the purchase of equipment, vehicles and furniture for the National Bureau of Statistics and the N230,705,000 by the NBS for the same purpose.