The Senate has approved President Muhammadu Buhari’s request for the virement of N276,757,232,395 billion to fund expenditures in the 2021 budget.
The approval followed the consideration of a motion sponsored by the Senate Leader, Yahaya Abdullahi (Kebbi North).
The motion was entitled: “2021 Appropriation Virement Proposal.”
Abdullahi in his motion recalled that on Tuesday 21 December, 2021, the Senate President read a communication from the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria requesting for virement of the 2021 Appropriation Act to fund critical expenditure in the 2021 Budget.
“Notes also that pursuant to Section 3 of the Appropriation Act 2021, amounts Appropriated under the Act can be vired only with the approval the National Assembly;
“Aware that the details of the expenditures proposed for the virement are contained in Schedule 1 hereto attached, while Schedule 2 shows the source of the funds to be vired for the items in Schedule 1; and
“Further aware that the 2021 Budget Implementation is faced with challenges that will require additional funding for some critical and urgent Line Items in the Budget”, the lawmaker said.
President Buhari in his virement request contained in a letter dated December 16, 2021, said the sum of N276,757,232,395 would be sourced from the N365 billion Service Wide Vote for Upscaling of National Social Investment Programme (NSIP).
A breakdown of the virement request detailed by the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning showed that N199,129,053,400 was for payment of local contractors debts, public service wage adjustment for MDAs, OSSAP SDGs Projects 3 and Group Life Assurance for all MDAs.
In addition, N4,500,821,569 is for the Federal Ministry of Education, N2,335,167,265 for the Nigeria Airforce, N4,617,811,857 for the Ministry of Defence, N25 billion naira for the National Assembly in settling minimum wage areas of National Assembly Staff and Intervention to settle outstanding liabilities owed local contractors.
Others are N20,038,920,773 for the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA), N762,678,972 for the Nigeria Correctional Services, N592 million naira for the Federal Roads Safety Commission (FRSC) as financial assistance for the execution of 2021 End of Year Special Patrol Operation.
Also, the sum of N19,780,778,558 was funding for the Federal Medical Centre, Katsina, University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, Ahmadu Bello Teaching Hospital, Zaria, Usman Danfodio University Teaching Hospital, Sokoto, Lagos University Teaching Hospital, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, and Jos University Teaching Hospital.