Minister of Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh, and the Ministry’s officials have discovered 386 projects worth N12.6billion reportedly inserted into its budget by the National Assembly.
The ministry’s budget of N40.918billion had been reduced to N31.618billion.
According to The Nation, the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Sen. Udoma Udo Udoma will brief President Muhammadu Buhari today.
Three projects unconnected with the agriculture sector were included in the ministry’s budget.
These border on erosion control in Federal University, Kashere, Kwadon and Garin Alhaji at N200 million, N100 million and N45 million.
A source told the newspaper that: “In the Agric sector, 386 projects were inserted, which totalled about N12.6 billion.
While N5.3 billion of the main ministry’s budget is taken away, about N7.2 billion is infused into almost 40 agencies and parastatals of the agric ministry.”
Other smuggled projects are provision of 58 boreholes for 29 rural communities and an additional 50 boreholes for 50 rural communities in the sum of N175 million and N150.4 million.
“Curiously, the communities are not named”, the source said, adding: “Similarly, of the N90 million allocated to the Cocoa Research Institute in Ibadan, various sums are allotted the following seven sub-heads: provision of rubber seeds and seedling in Igbotako, Okitipupa, (N5m), training and empowerment of youths in poultry farming in Oluyole, Ibadan (N20m) and provision of cassava processing plant in Etsako East Local Government Area of Edo State(N10m)
“Of the four sub-heads under the Rubber Research Institute, Benin, two areas are equally outside the focus of rubber. These are training and empowerment of youth and women in fish farming in Ndokwa, Delta State as well as fabrication and installation of cassava processing machines in Owan West Local Government Area of Edo State at N10m and N20m.
“Also, N1 billion was allocated to two projects in Kwara South Senatorial District, including the construction of rural roads for N700 million as well as empowerment of women and youths in agricultural products for N300 million.”