LEGISREPORTS NG – The Plateau House of Assembly yesterday scored the 2012 budget implementation “very poor”. Expressing the disappointment of the Assembly, Chairman of the Assembly’s Committee on Works, Mr. Ponmak Rindap while speaking in Jos, shortly after the ministry of works defended its proposals for the 2013 fiscal year told news reporters that “the general performance, especially from the ministry of works, was abysmally poor in 2012 despite an appropriation of N7.1”.

According to Rindap, N7.1 billion was approved for the completion of the on-going road projects in the 2012 budget. The road projects however, still stand undone. He ascribed this to the non release of appropriated funds by the ministry to contractors. “The budget performance last year was just absolutely poor,’’ Mr. Rindap said. Speaking further, Rindap said “even though there were appropriations and releases for the completion of on-going road works, no new roads had been awarded in the past five years ”. “There has been no new project in the works sector; we met on-going projects which have not been completed up to now as I am talking to you.”

The Plateau lawmaker said part of the requirements for budget defence included proofs that previous appropriated projects were actually executed, he however advised that more funds should released to contractors. “Budget performance is far below expectation, but we expect more releases from the government this year,” He said. He urged the ministry to be sensitive to the plight of road users, especially in the rural communities, and advised government to ensure prompt release of appropriated funds to relevant ministries and departments. “It is our desire that by the end of 2013, all road projects will be completed,” he said.The Commissioner for Works, Mr Chris Hassan, also told newsmen that contractors had been directed to immediately mobilize to site, to complete all on-going road construction before the end of March.

He lamented that some of the projects were awarded in 2008 and that their period of completion had elapsed. Hassan also disclosed that the State Executive Council, in 2012, approved the award of 12 new road contracts which had been captured in its 2013 appropriation. “Already, the work agreements have been signed between the government and the companies expected to carry out the jobs,’’ he said.



This report was prepared by our reporter in Jos.


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