22 September 2015, Abuja – The House of Representatives ad-hoc committee on the Non-Implementation of the 2015 Capital Budget has queried N222.1bn fuel subsidy expenditure by the executive.
The money was spent between January –July, 2015.
Pategi said the money was neither appropriated nor approved by the National Assembly.
He noted that such extra-budgetary expenditure had more often than not become a source of concern for legislators.
Petegi said, “Appropriation is an Act, and we insist on its implementation. We want to know where there are challenges, but to spend monies such as the N222.1bn without recourse to the parliament, is not acceptable to us.”
The committee also queried a loan of N615.96bn taken from the Ways and Means Account at the Central Bank of Nigeria, without recourse to the National Assembly.
The committee chairman directed the Ministry of Finance to provide details of these transactions in a position paper which should be submitted to the Clerk of the Committee within two days.
On the issue of the Treasury Single Account, Pategi said the National Assembly would consider a review of the Acts establishing some revenue generating agencies, so they can retain a portion of their revenue.
He cited an example of the Nigeria Customs Service which retains seven percent of its revenue and remits 93 percent to the Federation Account.
He said, “For instance, last year the Nigeria Ports Authority collected N161bn, they spent all of it and remitted only N1bn. These agencies belong to the people; you cannot spend these monies without recourse to Parliament.”
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Finance, Mrs. Anastasia Daniel-Nwaobia in her presentation to the committee, revealed that the Federal Government spent N222.1bn on fuel subsidy between January and July, 2015.
She admitted that the money was neither appropriated for in the 2015 Appropriation Act nor was it approved by the National Assembly.
Daniel-Nwaobia who was represented by the Director General, Budget Office of the Federation, Mr. Aliyu Gusau, said he did not have sufficient information on the expenditures.
Commenting on the loan secured from the CBN, Gusau said, “This is an item under contingency funds, but it allows room to take loans and things like that, but I am not too conversant with the details.
- – Punch