Commandant of the Nigeria Defence Academy ( NDA), Major -General Adeniyi Oyebade on Thursday in Abuja lamented the over N1.3billion shortfalls suffered by the Academy in budgetary releases by the Ministry of Finance.
Oyebade who made the disclosure while appearing before the Senate Committee on Defence to present the performance of the 2018 budget, said that the shortfalls had handicapped the Military Institution from paying non-regular allowances to its personnel.
He said that the allowances affected by the N1.3billion shortfall in 2018 budget releases are a hazard, responsible and excess workload allowances.
He said: “Aside from the N1.3billion shortfall, out of the N8.9billion capital votes appropriated for the Academy in the 2018 fiscal year, only N4.1billion has been released so far, making the implementation performance within the capital component to be 47% as at this month.”
He added that N9.0billion capital expenditure budget proposal made by the Academy for 2019 fiscal year was reduced to N8billion by the Ministry of Budget and National Planning.
He listed some of the capital projects to be carried out by the Academy in the 2019 budget to include Counterterrorism and Counter-Insurgency Village, NDA Sports Complex, Earth Dam among others..
Some committee members including the Chairman, Senator Abubakar Kyari ( APC Borno North ), however, observed a shortfall in the Academy’s 2019 budget proposal.
The Chairman noted that while the Academy’s personnel’s budgetary allocations for 2018 was N8.146billion, the proposed estimates for 2019 is N8.072billion.
He wondered whether the Academy had suffered depletion in staff strength to warrant the reduction.
The Commandant in his response said the N8.072billion personnel cost component of the 2019 budget proposal made by the Academy was in line with the envelope given to the Academy by the Ministry of Budget and National Planning.
He said: “No any drastic depletion in the staff strength of the Academy, it remains well over 2,000 in addition to the 2,000 cadet officers that have to be well kitted, and trained aside logistics and administration costs. We definitely need improved funding for overhead costs to keep the Academy in very good shape.”