POLITICAL ECONOMY

Nigerian Telecommunications Regulator Denies Extending Subventions To Sister Agency, NITDA

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By Cyber Era Reporter

Telecommunications sector umpire, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC),  has denied that ‘a wild’ speculation by an online publication(not https://www.cyberera.com.ng) the Commission gave N300 million(US$ 817,438.68), subvention to a sister agency in the National Information Technology Development Agency(NITDA), saying the report was a figment of imagination by the online medium.

The refutal was conveyed in a statement by NCC Management signed by its Director of Public Affairs(DPA), Dr. Henry Nkemadu.

The statement said in order to put the records straight, no agency of the Federal Government gave subvention to another agency, as by extant laws of the government, every agency made its budget and got approval for appropriation from the National Assembly and such budgets were spent according to the appropriation of the National Assembly, stressing, the NCC budget did not contain any allocation for subvention let alone granting same to a sister agency.

According to Nkemadu, “we cannot create a provision in our budget for another agency to implement. Subventions to all agencies are done by the Federal Government with resources domiciled in the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF).  Even salaries to Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA) come from there.”

Nkemadu stated that NITDA, as an agency of government, also drew its budget and spent same to execute its own programmes as it deemed fit.

He said since the advent of the new administration, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, had always encouraged a working relationship and close synergy between all the parastatals under the purview of the Ministry and not cross-funding of any of the parastatals.

The Minister, said, Nkemadu,  had also facilitated support at the highest levels of government to programmes and activities of the Commission, especially in facilitating meetings with the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) on issues of Right of Way (RoW) for expanding the telecommunications infrastructure and declaring telecommunications infrastructure as Critical National Infrastructure (CNI).

Nkemadu, therefore, posited that “we did not receive any directive from the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, on funding any activity of NITDA and no approval was given in that regard.”

“Whoever thinks so simply threw caution to the wind by rolling up speculative information that we know nothing about let alone implementing,” he added.

The DPA said “we have not done any partnership with NITDA to warrant any subvention for capacity building let alone implementing one. So, the aspect of creating a budget for subvention is not true.”

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