Saatah Nubari: Nigeria’s 2016 Budget For The Federal Ministry of Agriculture #SaatahBudgetSeries

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This is the tenth piece in the #SaatahBudgetSeries, and I will be looking at the budget for the Federal Ministry of Agriculture. I will advise that if you are yet to go through the nine previous articles in this budget analysis series, you should do so. That the previous government made giant strides in the agricultural sector is not really news, but will this government take the bar much higher, or crash it to the ground entirely? The first place to get a glimpse of this should be the budget for the Federal Ministry of Agriculture.

The Federal Ministry of Agriculture has 41 agencies/institutions under it, and it will save us time if I do not lay them all out. Instead I will just pick agencies/institutions of interest and run with it.

FEDERAL MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE

The Federal Ministry of Agriculture has a total budget of 76,753,672,273; 29,752,546,639 is for “Recurrent Expenditure” while 47,001,125,634 is for “Capital Expenditure.”

The Federal Ministry of Agriculture HQTRS, with a “Capital Expenditure” budget of 34,501,127,211, will spend 32,876,127,108 on “Research and Development.” Now, let me put this in perspective for you. There are more than 15 Agricultural Research Institutes in Nigeria, and they all have their separate budget for “Research and Development.” The main job of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture HQTRS is to oversee all the institutions and agencies under it and as such, it should have no business budgeting that much for “Research and Development.’ If you are still trying to get my point, consider this: in   the budget for “Research and Development in 2015 and 2015 was 700,000,000 and 102,048,000 respectively. Meaning there is an over 4,500% increase from the figure in the 2014 budget and over 30,500% increase from what was budgeted for the same item in the 2015 budget. Remember what I said about “Research and Development” being a conduit for corrupt dealings? This is a typical example.

The Federal Ministry of Agriculture HQTRS will also spend 350,000,000 for the “Rehabilitation/Repairs of Residential Buildings,” while 265,000,103 will be for “Monitoring and Evaluation.”

Federal College of Produce Inspection and Stored Products Technology, Kano, will spend a meagre 8,681,460 on “Research and Development.” Now compare with what the people sitting in the offices at the Federal Ministry of Agriculture HQTRS will spend on the same item.

National Centre for Agricultural Mechanisation, Ilorin will spend 456,380,000 for “Office Upgrade.” This right here will only be justified if they are upgrading from a mud built office equipped with bush lanterns and candles, to a concrete built office with computers and writing desks. Anything short of this will not be funny.

40,000,000, that is what the National Cereals Research Institute—Badeggi will spend to “Purchase Smart Phones for Farmers.” They actually are not done. They will spend 8,080,000 to drill a borehole.

National Root Crop Research Institute, Umudike, will spend 94,190,808 on the “Renovation of Old Guest House.”

National Institute for Oil Palm Research budgeted 15,000,000 for “Water Reticulation in Main Station,” and a separate 5,000,000 for the same item. Why the duplicity?

Institute of Agricultural Research—Zaria, will spend 46,826,911 for the “Painting of Offices.” They will probably make use of gold paints.

Federal College of Agriculture, Moore Plantation- Ibadan, will spend 42,275,000 on “Purchase of Reams of Papers for Student Examination use and Staff Administrative Work,” and yet another 21,000,000 was budgeted for the same item.

14,223,500 is what the Federal College of Agriculture, Moore Plantation-Ibadan, will spend on “Payment of Broad band Internet Access Charges and Smile Internet Provider for College E-Library,” and a separate 21,000,000 was budgeted for the same item, taking the total to about 35,223,500 this amount is also different from the amount budgeted for “Internet Charges” under “Recurrent Expenditure” for the same College. I do not know, but it seems the Federal College of Agriculture are trying to create a new “Internet.”

The Federal College of Fishery and Marine Activities-Lagos, has two line items for the same purpose. The first is the budgeting of 626,037,709 for the “Construction/Provision of Agricultural Facilities” whiles the second provision is 50,000,000 for the same purpose. The Federal College of Fishery and Marine Activities will also spend 38,740,000 on the “Construction of Borehole.”

The National Agricultural Seeds Council will spend 6,000,000 on the “Purchase of Photocopying Machine.”

The Nigeria Institute of Oceanography and Marine Research will spend 26,552,710 to purchase “Fishing Net, Spare Parts, and Mending Materials for Nets.” Something tells me this is the net Jesus commanded Peter to cast into the river, in the bible.

We have come to the end of this part of the budget analysis. The in-between for the day is: 215,458,511, is what the Nigeria Institute of Transport Technology will spend for the “Construction of DG’s Office and Board Room.” Have a nice day!

_____________________

Saatah Nubari is on Twitter @Saatah

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