On Tuesday, July 15, the senate passed N271.1bn budget for the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and N322.6bn for the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) for the year 2014.
In the FCT budget, N161.8bn was allocated for capital expenditure, N109.2bn for recurrent expenditure, N60.037bn for overhead cost and N49.2bn for personnel cost.
According to the Vice Chairman of the committee, Senator Domingo Obende, N16bn was designated for the development of the health sector, including the provision of free antenatal treatment and ante retro-viral drugs for HIV/AIDS patient.
He added that N6bn had been allocated for the administration of security in the FCT, explaining that this allocation is important due to the security threats confronting the city in recent times as he cited the recent bomb blast in Nyanya, as one of the signs.
The Senator revealed that N19.8bn had been allocated for roads and electricity projects in satellite towns such as Kubwa, Karu, Karshi, among others, adding that another N31bn has been budgeted for provision of light rail and high capacity buses in the capital city.
Senator Joshua Dariye (Plateau Central) suggested that investigations should be carried out on FCT regarding the installation of ineffective Close Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras in the city for which allocation was previously made, noting that the contractor moves freely in the streets.
The sum of N322.6bn NDDC budget was also passed by the senate comprising of N295.6bn as project development expenditure, N15.08bn as personnel expenditure and N1.9bn as capital expenditure.
The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Niger Delta, Senator James Manager, suggested the need for the Senate to pursue proper calculation and release of 15% statutory contribution by the federal government for the funding of NDDC.
He also urged the Senate to assist in enforcing the payment of statutory 50 per cent of allocations to member states of the commission from ecological fund to enhance NDDC’s revenue base.
The Senate also approved the sum of N52.5bn as the 2014 budget for the Nigeria Communication Commission (NCC) on Tuesday. The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Communications, Senator Gilbert Nnaji, who presented the budget, said the budget comprised N34.6bn for capital expenditure and N1.5bn for recurrent expenditure and another N12.5bn for project development.
He also presented N14.5 billion as Universal Service Providers’ Fund budget in 2014.
After passing all the budgets, Senate President, David Mark, urged the committee chairmen to ensure adequate supervision of the expenditure.