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Reps raise panel to harmonise Niger Delta ministry’s 2020 budget

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• Senate insists on probing job racketeering
The House of Representatives Committee on Niger Delta has raised a five-man panel to harmonise the 2020 budget proposal of the ministry to ensure that all pending projects in the 2019 budget were completed before commencement of new ones.

The committee chairman, Essien Ayi, inaugurated the panel during the 2020 budget defence yesterday in Abuja.

The Budget Harmonisation Committee, chaired by the Deputy Chairman of the House Committee on Niger Delta, Henry Nwawuba, is to liaise with the Senate Committee on Niger Delta Affairs to ensure that all uncompleted projects in the 2019 budget were reflected in the 2020 appropriation bill.

According to Ayi, the committee “is committed to passing a justifiable budget proposal that will encourage peace and sustainable development in the region.”

He noted that all ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) were not allowed to embark on new projects unless provisions were made for the completion of all pending projects.

Earlier, the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, said the ministry’s presentation was based on the 2020 circular, which directed MDAs to roll over 60 per cent of their 2019 capital budget to 2020.

The minister said emphasis was on completion of ongoing projects and introduction of vital projects that would impact the people positively.

Meanwhile, the Senate panel on employment, labour and productivity has insisted on investigating the alleged unwholesome practices relating to job racketeering.

The leadership had failed to defend the allegation which its committee investigated and indicted some agencies.

Chairman of the committee, Benjamin Uwajumogu, disclosed this in his opening address at the interactive session with MDAs under the Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity.

He said the attention of the committee had been drawn to cases of illegal recruitment, uncoordinated implementation of projects/programmes, inflation of contracts and other sundry corrupt practices in some MDAs.

The chair noted that the core responsibility of the committee was to conduct oversight functions over all labour-related matters.


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