- FG Extends 2016 Budget Implementation to March 2017
The Federal Government has extended the execution of the N1.58tn capital component of the 2016 budget to the end of March 2017.
The development was confirmed by the Accountant-General of the Federation, Alhaji Ahmed Idris, via a circular with reference number OAGF/CAD/026/V.111/108.
The circular, which was obtained by our correspondent on Friday in Abuja, was addressed to top government officials such as the Chief of Staff to the President, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, ministers, National Security Adviser, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and all service chiefs.
Others are the Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, all permanent secretaries (federal), Clerk of the National Assembly, Auditor General of the Federation, all vice chancellors of federal universities, all directors of finance and internal audit and all directors-general.
The circular, titled “Guidelines for financial activities for end of year 2016”, stated that while the implementation of the recurrent budget was expected to end on December 31, 2016, the capital component would be allowed to go on until March ending.
Idris said the need to issue the circular became imperative in order to promote probity, transparency and good governance.
The circular read in part, “It has become imperative to provide guidelines to all Ministries, Departments and Agencies and other arms of government on financial activities for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2016.
“The objective of the guidelines is to promote probity, transparency, accountability and good governance in line with the policy of trust of the present administration.
“All ‘unspent’ balances in the recurrent expenditure cash books at the end of 2016 financial year will be closed.
“The Government Integrated Financial Management Information System platform will be closed by midnight of December 31, 2016 and the MDA balances will be mopped into the Consolidated Revenue/Treasury Single Account accordingly.
“The unexpended recurrent votes of the MDAs on the TSA-sub accounts under the CBN/Remita gateway for the 2016 financial year shall similarly lapse at midnight of December 31, 2016.”
It added, “Capital allocation and statutory transfer for the financial year ended December 31, 2016 will not be closed but extended to March 31, 2017.
“Accordingly, all MDAs will have access to their capital funds and statutory transfers up until March 31, 2017 as may be applied by the National Assembly.”
The circular, however, stipulated that the MDAs would be responsible for transfering the relevant legal or financial commitments into the New Year.
The transfer commitment, it added, would have impact on the 2017 budget including the capital budget transferred from the 2016 fiscal period.
It however, noted that such transactions would be separately disclosed in the consolidated financial statements of the Federal Government.
The N6.06tn 2016 budget, which was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari on May 5 had a recurrent expenditure of N2.65tn; capital expenditure of N1.58tn, with debt service of N1.47tn and fiscal deficit of N2.2tn.
So far, about N753.6bn has been released by the Ministry of Finance for capital projects with the Ministry of Power receiving the highest amount of capital releases of N209.24bn.
The Special Adviser on Media to the Finance Minister, Mr. Festus Akanbi, said in a statement that the Ministry of Defence had N69.5bn and the Ministry of Transportation followed with N30.5bn.
Others are agriculture, N29.5bn; water resources, N25.2bn; interior, N21.2bn; health, N18.4bn; education, N16.7bn; Niger Delta, N8.1bn; science and technology, N6.6bn; mines and steel, N3.3bn; and petroleum resources, N2.4bn.
The statement from the ministry also stated that the sum of N312.5bn was released to what it described as “others”.
The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udo Udoma, said a total of N753.6bn already released for capital expenditure in 2016 was the highest in the nation’s recent history, even in the era of high oil prices.
At an interactive session with members of the Senate Committee on Appropriation in Abuja, Udoma had said that in spite of the shortfall in revenue expectation, the government was committed to its debt obligations and had made efforts to fund the critical sectors to enable the government to function smoothly while seeking lasting solutions to the revenue shortfalls.
He explained that although the 2016 budget was well conceived, with reasonably conservative benchmarks, it recorded unanticipated revenue shortfalls along the line due to militants’ activities in the oil-producing Niger Delta region.
This development, he added, adversely affected the budgeted production levels for the 2016 fiscal year.
University Of Ibadan (UI) Goes Digital, Releases Timetable for Virtual Academic Session
University of Ibadan (UI) on Friday announced it is going ahead with resumption on February 20 despite the second wave of COVID-19.
In a statement released by the school, the First Semester of the 2020/2021 academic session will commence virtually on February 20, 2021.
The virtual academic session will last for 13 straight weeks and end on Friday May 12, 2021, while the matriculation ceremony will hold on Tuesday March 16, 2021.
The University of Ibadan also scheduled one week for the Finalization of Continuous Assessment, to begin from Mon. 17 May and ends Friday 21 May.
The rising number of COVID-19 cases has compelled the Senate to approve the virtual academic session in an effort to ensure the tertiary institution abides by the protocols established by the Federal Government to curb the spread of the pandemic.
“It, therefore, agreed that the 2020/2021 First Semester lectures will be delivered online. In this regard, students will not be accommodated on campus,” a statement from the school said.
“Senate also approved the cancellation of the 2019/2020 session. The next session is, therefore, renamed 2020/2021 Academic Session. Consequently, students who have been admitted for the 2019/2020 session will now be regarded as the 2020/2021 intakes.
“Kindly note that online opening of Registration Portal and Orientation Programme for the 2020/2021 intakes may commence ahead of the Sat 20/02/21 date indicated above,” the statement said.
House of Representatives Impeached Trump Over Capitol Invasion
The United States House of Representatives on Wednesday impeached President Trump for the second time after instigating the US Capitol invasion.
Led by Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, 232 representatives, including 10 Republicans, voted to impeach the outgoing president against 197 that voted for him to remain in the office for the next six days when he would handover to the president-elect, Joe Biden.
The ten Republicans were Representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the party’s No. 3 leader in the House; Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington; John Katko of New York; Adam Kinzinger of Illinois; Fred Upton of Michigan; Dan Newhouse of Washington; Peter Meijer of Michigan; Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio; David Valadao of California; and Tom Rice of South Carolina.
Speaking before the vote, Pelosi said “a constitutional remedy that will ensure that the Republic will be safe from this man who is so resolutely determined to tear down the things that we hold dear and that hold us together.”
“He must go. He is a clear and present danger to the nation that we all love,” she said, adding later, “It gives me no pleasure to say this — it breaks my heart.”
Republicans, who unanimously stood behind president Trump in 2019 during his first impeachment, were divided this time over the attack on Capitol.
A Republican representative from California, Kevin McCarthy, said “The president bears responsibility for Wednesday’s attack on Congress by mob rioters,” Mr. McCarthy said. “He should have immediately denounced the mob when he saw what was unfolding.”
US Congress Declares Joe Biden as The 46th President of The United States After Trump Mob Left
The joint congress of the United States on Thursday, January 7, 2021 certified Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States following President Trump’s mob action that disrupted the congress joint proceeding on Wednesday.
After ordering his followers to disrupt proceedings on Wednesday, President Trump later announced that there will be an orderly transition on January 20.
“Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th,” Trump said in a statement issued by White House Deputy Chief of Staff Dan Scavino.
“I have always said we would continue our fight to ensure that only legal votes were counted. While this represents the end of the greatest first term in presidential history, it’s only the beginning of our fight to Make America Great Again!” Trump added.
While the certification was just a mere formality as Biden had secured enough electoral college votes (270) required to clinch the world’s most powerful seat, the refusal of Donald Trump to accept the results of the November 2020 election made the session a keenly watched, especially after Trump mob disrupted a joint session of the Senate.
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