2019 budget: No allocation for constituency projects to Justice Ministry

The Federal Ministry of Justice has no allocation for any alleged constituency or zonal intervention projects in the 2019 approved budget, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry and Solicitor General of the Federation, Dayo Apata(SAN) , has said.

In a letter dated December 3, 2019, addressed to the Chairman, Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Apata described media reports on the matter as erroneous and misleading vituperation of vilification.

Dr Umar Jibrilu Gwandu, Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations, to the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), in a statement ,on Wednesday, said that “the attention of the AGF was drawn to a publication in a national daily on Monday 2nd December 2019 wherein the Federal Ministry of Justice was alleged to have inserted the sum of N2.7 billion in its 2019 Appropriation for Community Projects.

“The report, according to the statement prompted the reaction and rebuttal of the said misleading publication and to as well avail the public on the authentic data which is in harmony with the 2019 Appropriation by the National Assembly for the Ministry.”

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The Permanent Secretary said in the letter that the Ministry has no constituency project in its budgets as a Ministry and added that after thorough investigation on the matter, the Ministry realized that two agencies under its supervision; the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Person (NAPTIP) and National Drug Law Enforcement Agencies (NDLEA) have provisions for constituency projects due to their statutory functions.

While NAPTIP was allocated N110 million, NDLEA has N766.46 million which amount to N876 million as against the N2.7 billion as mischievously exaggerated by the media.

“It needs to be reinstated for emphasis that the Federal Ministry of Justice, in its own right, has no allocation for constituency projects in its 2019 budget. The budgets of statutory parastatals under its supervision in that respect was unduly overblown.

The statement said, “the stated amount is not contained in the 2019 budget of the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry was never aware of such allocation,” adding that, “the intendment of the letter is to substantially establish that the sum mentioned in the aforesaid publication is at variance with the statutory allocation of the Ministry in the 2019 budget.

“Unfortunately, upon the said publication, this office was inundated with series of enquiries, questions and news reporters requesting for clarification. It would have been more appropriate if your good office had first sought for our clarification on the issue before going to the press.”

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