Ex-aviation minister, Oduah wants 20 per cent of budget for constituency projects

By Wahab Akanji, Abuja

A member of the Senate, Stella Oduah has suggested allocation of at least, 20 per cent of annual budgets allocated to constituency projects.

She made the suggestion in a statement she signed and made available to newsmen on Friday in Abuja, saying constituency projects were meant for rural development and that there was the need for institutional and legislative frameworks for the execution of such projects in the country.

Oduah said that the move, when materialised, would ensure that such projects benefit a cross session of the inhabitants of a particular area the projects were located.

“Any funding under this bill shall be for a complete project or a defined phase of a project and may include the acquisition of land.’’

She explained that the bill would correct misconceptions that lawmakers were directly in control of constituency projects.

“It is instructive to note, by way of educating the general public, that members of the National Assembly merely identify the needs of the constituents and recommend same to the executive during budgeting.

“Ultimately, they have no direct control over their implementation; hence the award, financing and supervision of constituency projects are the preserves of appropriation agencies other than the National Assembly’’.

According to her, the Bill is for an Act to provide for Constituency Projects in the Annual Budget of the Federation (SB. 321), adding that it has been read for the first time.

“The Bill was on Dec.8 referred to the Committee on States and Local Government Areas for more legislative actions while it will report back within four weeks.’

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