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Budget: Jonathan urges Senate to reverse N78.54bn cut

By on July 3, 2013

President Goodluck Jonathan has urged the Senate to reverse itself by restoring the N78.54bn cut from the capital allocations to some Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the Federal Government in the 2013 budget.

He also asked the Senate to restore all the reductions from the personnel cost of all the agencies to avert possible industrial crisis, but he did not state any particular figure.

These are contained in the amendments to the 2013 budget sent to the National Assembly as presented on the floor of the Senate on Tuesday.

According to the President, agencies that should have their original budgetary provisions restored are the ministries of Works, Health, Power, Transport and Education as well as the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme.

The breakdown of the cuts, which the President wants restored, included SURE-P, N18bn; Works, N25.5bn; Health, N10bn; Power, N16.3bn; Transport, N3.1bn; and Education, N5.64bn.

Jonathan said, “Following further consultations, I am forwarding a new version of the categorised 2013 amendment budget proposal indicating changes proposed across the expenditure categories.

“Some capital projects, the allocations of which were reduced and which we seek your cooperation in restoring so as to promote national development, include the following:

“Ministry of Works: Abuja-Lokoja road reduced by N4bn; Kano-Maiduguri road, reduced by N3.5bn; dualisation of Ibadan-Ilorin Section 2, reduced by N5.5bn; rehabilitation of Jebba Bridge, reduced by N1.25bn; rehabilitation of burnt Marine Bridge and Iddo Bridge, reduced by N1bn; special intervention fund for emergency roads and bridge washout across the country, reduced by N6.28bn; and dualisation of Obajana junction to Benin, reduced by N4bn.

“Ministry of Health: MDG HIV/AIDS ARV drugs allocation reduced by N1bn; routine immunisation vaccines, reduced by N1.75bn; malaria programme procurement and distribution of insecticides, reduced by N.08bn; payment of pledge for Onchocerciasis recertification, cut by N0.12bn; National Trauma Centre, Abuja, reduced by N0.1bn, etc.”

For the Ministry of Power, the President said total of N16.3bn was cut from power projects, while the Ministry of Transport had the allocation for the construction of the Abuja-Kaduna rail line reduced by N1.4bn; Jebba-Kano rail line rehabilitation, N0.5bn; procurement and rehabilitation of wagons/locomotives, N1bn; and insurance of locomotives, N0.2bn.