Reps reject Fashola’s ‘copy and paste’ budget

The House of Representatives Committee has rejected the 2019 budget presented by Urban and Regional Development Department, a department under Babatunde Fashola’s Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing.

This was sequel to an observation of a member of the committee, Akinade-Fijabi Saheed (APC-Oyo) during the committee’s budget defence on Thursday in Abuja.

Mr Saheed had earlier observed that the 2019 budget of the department was similar to that of 2018.

He said that it was a ‘copy and paste job’ as projects listed in the 2018 budget were the same listed for 2019 with the same locations.

The lawmaker said there was no indication to show if the projects were ongoing or had been completed.

He said the department had not done a good job on its 2019 budget and that there was no need continuing with the 2019 budget defence session.

Also, Isiaka Ibrahim (APC-Ogun) observed that the budget was not clear on specific allocation for personnel cost, overhead cost and capital expenditure.

He said some uncompleted projects were conspicuously omitted in the 2019 budget and that there was need for a more comprehensive job.

Earlier, the Minister of State for Power, Works and Housing, Mustapha Shehuri said the sum of N128.3 billion was appropriated to the Housing Sector of the Ministry in the 2018 fiscal year.

Mr Shehuri said out of the amount, the Department received a total capital allocation of N1.2 billion.

According to him, the personnel cost of the ministry was inclusive of that of the Department and was being implemented through the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) Programme under the Accountant General of the Federation.

Not satisfied with the presentation, the Chairman of the Committee, Adamu Muhammadu (APC-Jigawa) ruled that the department technical team meets with committee to prepare the budget.

(NAN)

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