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Senate Drills Lai Mohammed Over N250m Project; N19m Travel Expenses

 

The Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, was drilled by the Senate Information Committee about the existence of a project named ‘Completion of NTA Gashua Sub-Station Underway’.

The amount of N250 million allocated for the said project was released to the ministry, according to the legislators.

This happened on Tuesday at the National Assembly in Abuja, as Mohammed led some top ministry officials to defend their 2021 budget estimates before lawmakers.

At the defence session, members of the committee questioned the minister why, considering the 100% fund released for implementation in the 2020 fiscal year, the project had not been implemented to a fair standard.

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In his response, Mohammed stated that the project was funded as a constituency project by a lawmaker and put into the budget for 2020.

He noted, however, that the project fund was released on September 24 , 2020, making it difficult to implement it to a significant level.

In their reaction, the members of the committee disagreed with the minister that the project was tagged as a constituency one.

In associated growth, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the legislators also sought an explanation from Mohammed for the N19 million spent on international travel.

He told the committee that N19 million was spent on travel, out of N43 million.

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Replying, the Minister clarified that all expenditure on foreign travel was for the duration from January to March prior to the imposition of the COVID-19 lockdown.

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