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Senate Passes N271bn FCT Budget

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nass Ewherido37

Teddy Oscar, Abuja

The Senate on Tuesday passed the 2014 Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Budget of N271 billion, one week, after the House of Representatives had done same in the Green Chambers.

The initial executive 2014 Budget proposal of N322.6 billion for the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) was also approved without tinkering on the floor of the Red Chambers.

It also passed the sum of N50.2 billion budget proposal for the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

In the FCT Budget, the sum of N161, 804,111,031 was earmarked for the capital expenditure, while the sum of N109,238,434,881 was meant for recurrent expenditure.

A breakdown of the recurrent component shows that the sum of N60,03,490,023 is for the overhead, while N49,200,944,858 is for personnel costs.

According to the report of the Senate Committee on FCT, which did the final legislative work on the proposal, the capital provision will take care of capital projects for the service of the FCT.

They include: expansion and rehabilitation of Airport and Kubwa Expressways and the provision of infrastructure to on-going districts such as Jahi, Wuye, Maitama Extension and Abuja North-West.

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The capital component of the project also made provision for the opening of new districts in the FCT such as Kyami, Mbora and others. To this effect, the sum of N2 billion was earmarked for construction and completion of various engineering infrastructure projects in the satellite towns of the territory.

Also, the sum of N6 billion was allocated for security administration of the nation’s political capital in 2014.

The decision of the Senate to give priority attention to security was informed by the increasing security challenges in the FCT, especially with the recent bomb attacks that took place at the city centre and some suburbs of the territory.

For the health sector, the Red Chamber approved the sum of N16 billion for the 2014 budget.

Senator Domingo Obende, who is the vice chairman of the Committee on the FCT and presented the report at plenary, explained that the provision was made to address the health needs of the territory.

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He noted that the health facilities in Abuja were being overstretched by the population explosion being witnessed in the territory recently, especially with the recent bomb blasts in Nyanya and EMAB plaza in Wuse ii of the FCT that induced congestion in the various hospitals in Abuja.

Similarly, education, agriculture and rural development, as well as social development secretariat received N5 billion, N3 billion and N4 billion, respectively, for the year 2014.

In a related development, the Senate approved without tinkering with the initial executive proposal, the sum of N322.6 billion as the total budget estimate for NDDC in the year 2014.

President Goodluck Jonathan had on June 4, 2014, presented the sum of N322.6 billion as the 2014 Budget proposal of the commission to the Senate for consideration and approval.

In the approved estimate, projects development expenditure received the sum of N295,051,170,000.00 while capital expenditure (internal) is to gulp N2,281,280,000.00. Personnel got allocation of N15,080,730,000.00 and overhead, N10,186,820,000.00.

The Senate also passed the sum of N50.2 billion budget proposal for NCC.

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