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Lawmaker advocates improved budgetary allocation for ministry of information

Director General, FRCN Dr Mansur Liman and his team during a budget defence at the National Assembly. Photo: Ibrahim Shehu

The chairman house of Representatives committee on information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values, Mr Olusegun Odebunmi, says the 2023 budgetary allocation to the Ministry of information is inadequate.

Mr Odebunmi made the remark at the 2022 budget performance and 2023 budget defense session of the ministry and its agencies at the National Assembly.

He observed that considering the critical role information dissemination plays in a democracy, the ministry should have the same budgetary allocation as security agencies.

According to him adequate budgetary allocation to the ministry would greatly assist in the fight against insecurity.

The Minister of Information and Culture Alh Lai Muhammad stated that Nigeria is at a critical stage, whereby efficient and effective information dissemination is needed to combat the challenges facing the country.

“It is a time of challenges, hardship and headwinds like this that you need your ministry of information in particular not only to chronicle what you have achieved, despite the lack of funds, but to combat fake news, disinformation, hate speech, which today has attained quite a hight that is threatening our very existence. “

Alh Lai Muhammad said though the sources of revenue of the ministry have dwindled, there is no better time to have more funds to enable the ministry to discharge its constitutional responsibilities.

Defending the 2023 budget proposal of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria FRCN, The Director General Dr Mansur Liman, stated that the sum of N10.528,149,830 was appropriated of which personnel cost is over N10.128 billion naira, the overhead cost of N218.1 million naira while N181.618 naira is for capital projects.

The Director General added that the corporation is projecting an internally generated revenue of over N1.62 billion naira for the 2023 fiscal year.

Dr Liman revealed that the corporation is working with the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National planning on recruitment, saying that if the corporation did not embark on the exercise, there could be some gap in staff strength which is not good for FRCN.

Other agencies that appeared before the committee included the Voice of Nigeria, NTA, NOA and NAN amongst others.

Reporting by Ibrahim Shehu; Editing by Abdullahi Lamino