Funds ‘must better lives’
GOVERNMENT| Oct. 10, 2012, 7:43 a.m.
By Kokumo Goodie, Lagos, Nigeria
Nigeria’s House of Representatives Communications Committee says funds allocated in the Appropriation Act must be spent well to better the life of the citizens.
The Committee therefore seeks for judicious use of budgetary allocations to government agencies, ministries and departments (MDAs) in the country, arguing that it could help address issues like frightening unemployment rate in the country.
Honourable Oyetunde Ojo, chairman of the committee who led other members to the Lagos Campus of Digital Bridge Institute (DBI), Oshodi, said during an inspection of ongoing projects of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), that as representatives of the people, elected by the people, it is just appropriate that members see what the funds appropriated in the budget are used for.
The property housing the Lagos DBI campus used to be owned by former state-run but now moribund Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) but had over the years been neglected before the NCC acquired the property from the government and paid for it.
“The National Assembly appropriates the funds. We must see what the appropriated funds have been used for because at the end of the day, Nigerians will hold us accountable. Apart from being a knowledge-based institution, it is also going to take care of job creation. You can imagine how many people will be employed when it is completed. That is always our agitation with the House (with the executive over budget implementation),” the chairman said.
According to him, though the project started before the passage of 2012 appropriation bill, a total sum of N51 billion was approved for the NCC in year 2012 budget.
“This project started before the 2012 budget. N51 billion was appropriated in the 2012 budget, but not for this job alone. The NCC has other things like the payment of salaries and (execution) of other projects like the emergency communication centres that they are doing across the country which will have fire service equipment and ambulances,” he said, adding that the world is in the information technology age and Nigeria cannot sit back.
On his impression about the level of work done in the institute, he said the committee members are completely satisfied with what they saw on ground. “We are satisfied with what I have seen. I used to know this place before now because my constituency is not far from this area. This is a good transformation. May be it was because we have to push them to do this, but being here and seeing what is on ground, it is highly commendable,” Honourable Ojo said.
He said the committee had also realised that the direction the world was moving now is the digital direction, adding that ICT training was also very important. “If you go to the US, once you have a SIM (subscriber identity module) card, you automatically have broadband facility which means you have internet facility. That is the level we are going and that is why we said they should train their staff to meet up with the digital age,” he said.
Tony Ojobo, director, Public Affairs at the NCC, said the project would be completed on schedule and assured that fresh students would be admitted into the school by the next academic session. Ojobo added that the institute had, since inception, served as the training hub for top civil servants in the federal ministries, adding that state governments have also tapped into the knowledge pool of the institute.
MORE GOVERNMENT NEWS
Lawmakers want TSA investigatedNigeria’s lower house, the House of Representatives, is making moves to investigate how much has come into the Treasury Single Account (TSA). Read More
BVN fished out 40,000 ghost workersNigeria’s Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment says the Bank Verification Number introduced by the Central Bank of Nigeria has saved the Federal Government billions of naira. Read More
Kenya embraces online motor vehicle registration to fight corruptionIn a bid to weed out corruption and increase efficiency in the road transport sector, the Kenyan government is set to unveil online vehicle registration. Read More
Botswana Post opens new money transfer corridorsBotswanaPost says it has launched another two money transfer routes – to Lesotho Postal Services and Swaziland Postal Services. Read More
International Conference on the Internet on in GaboroneThe University of Botswana is hosting the First International Conference on the Internet, Cyber Security and Information Systems in Gaborone to the 20th May 2016 at The Gaborone International Convention Center (GICC). Read More
Again, NCC’s 2.6GHz spectrum auctions fall throughThe planned 2.6 gigahertz (GHz) spectrum auction scheduled by Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) may have fallen through. Read More
Government rules out OTT regulation in GhanaGhana’s Deputy Minister of Communication, Ato Sarpong, has told key industry players in Accra that the government has no intention of regulating over-the-top operations in the country. Read More
Rwanda, MasterCard collaborate on cashless societyThe Government of Rwanda has announced a collaboration with MasterCard to fast-track the country’s move to include 90 percent of its citizens in the financial mainstream. Read More
Mobile spam: NCC reads riot act to telcosWorried by a flurry of complaints, the Nigerian Communications Commission has warned mobile network operators to take decisive action to curb unsolicited text messages and calls to customers. Read More
FEATURED STORYGovernment should encourage youths in ICT early
Youths should be given more encouragement to develop their ICT skills, an 11-year-old app developer told Kokumo Goodie.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHIBM Opens First Cloud Data Centre in South Africa
IBM is opening a new IBM Cloud Data Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa. The new cloud center is the result of a close collaboration with Gijima and Vodacom and is designed to support cloud adoption and customer demand across the continent.