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Senate clears finance ministry on alleged non-release of funds to MDAs

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PIB passes first reading in Senate

The Senate said on Friday absolved the Federal Ministry of Finance of any wrongdoing on the alleged non-release of funds to Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) for budget executions.

The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriation, Jibrin Barau, who disclosed this at the plenary, argued that the MDAs had enjoyed prompt release of funds for recurrent and capital overhead this year.

Some Heads of MDAs had during the ongoing 2022 budget defence session at the National Assembly revealed that paucity of funds was responsible for their poor budget performance this year.

However, Barau said his committee has been monitoring the release of funds, saying, “the ministry has done well.”

“I don’t think that is correct as far as I know of capital releases to Ministries, Agencies, and the Department of Government. The Federal Ministry of Finance has done very well in the prompt release of funds for the execution of capital projects.

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“They are doing very well, but the problem lies with some agencies of government that were yet to conclude procurement processes for execution of capital projects. As far as I know as the Senate Committee Chairman on Appropriation, there is so much money in accounts of some MDAs.

“In respect to the implementation of the 2021 budget by the various agencies that have appeared before the various Committees so far, I think there was no problem so far. There’s also no problem accessing funds already released and anything contrary is not correct.

“I want to recall that the budget performance for last year was 100 hundred percent and this year, from what the Committee on Appropriation has discovered, they are doing well such that by December when the lifespan of 2021 would expire, they would have had 100% performance too.

“I was chairing this Committee between 1999 and 2003 and I know the difference between now and then, it hadn’t been so good like this.”

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