- MDAs to Submit 2017 Budget Electronically
The Federal Government has directed all Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs) to submit their 2017 budget proposals to a designated web portal domiciled in the Budget Office.
This is a departure from the old practice of MDAs submitting their annual budgets through flash drives to the Budget Office. Sources said the new development was designed to stop the hitches of this year’s budget creeping in to next year’s budget. The Budget Office is expected to review it online and send it back online after corrections have been effected.
The Minister of State in the Budget Ministry, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed who spoke yesterday in Abuja, sai the new process of submitting budget by MDAs was also designed to limit human interface and ensure better quality budget 2017.
According to her, the Federal Government has achieved 41.25 per cent in 2016 budget implementation as at October with a total disbursement of N2.5 trillion.
Speaking in an interview with reporters in Abuja at the second presidential economic communications workshop, the minister also confirmed that the 2017 budget is ready but that the executive was waiting for the approval of Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) currently in the custody of the National Assembly for approval.
“We planned 2017 budget very carefully by putting in place an IT system that minimises human interface in the budget process to make the budget a very high quality budget. We now have a web portal whereby ministries prepare their budget and submit online and the budget office reviews it online and send back via online where corrections would be made. This will reduce significantly the human interface to ensure that we have a high quality budget,” she said.
She said the executive arm was ready with 2017 budget, but waiting for the National Assembly’s approval of MTEF before its submission to the National Assembly.
With regard to the current budget, the minister said the 2016 has been very challenging to the Federal Government in terms of revenue receipt and budget implementation.
She said: “It’s been very challenging for us. Apart from the fact that we are in recession, we have some of our people facing humanitarian crisis in the Northeast. The Niger Delta crisis has pruned down revenue from oil and gas. We have a lot of projects that we planned to do but the revenue yield is not as we projected in the budget and this is largely due to vandalism of major oil infrastructures in the Niger Delta region. We have minimal revenue but we have a lot of plans to share and allocate resources.”
On what has been disbursed from the 2016 budget, she said the government has released about N2.5 trillion of N6.06 trillion 2016 budget. Of the releases, she said N753 billion was for capital projects, a significant portion of which was devoted to infrastructure and related projects. N108 billion for overheads, N117 billion as statutory transfers, N142 billion for consolidated pension, N1.2 trillion for personnel and N135 billion for service wide.
The minister also said the government was currently developing a National Economic Recovery plan covering 2017- 2020.
The plan, she said would guide preparation of annual budgets and guide the Economic Management Team and budgeting process over short to medium term.