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The Senate Disapproves of the Information Ministry’s N1 billion Budget Allocation

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The Senate Committee on Information expressed concern over the limited budget allocated to the Ministry of Information and National Orientation in the 2024 budget, questioning the ministry’s ability to fulfil its critical role with such scarce resources.……CONTINUE READING>>>

Senator Kenneth Eze, the Committee’s Chairman, voiced his reservations during the 2024 budget defense session with Information Minister Alhaji Mohammed Idris on Tuesday. He highlighted the crucial role of the ministry in shaping public perception and bridging the gap between the government and the people.

Eze emphasised that the ministry’s meagre budget of N1 billion for capital expenditure was insufficient to effectively implement crucial programs like the national values and attitudes re-orientation campaign, the national and international branding campaign, and regular press briefings.

He criticised the absence of funding in the budget for agencies under the ministry’s purview, such as the Nigeria Press Council and APCON, raising concerns about their ability to function effectively without personnel or resources.

“This is not a budget that can be visible if we are telling our story as a country,” Eze emphasised.

“There is no way we can go far. You have a great initiative on how you are going to transform the country in the area of information, but I wonder how you are going to do that with these little resources.

“Information ministry is a very sensitive ministry that should be taken seriously and funded and if we are talking about the Renewed Hope Agenda that we want as a country, the information ministry should be at the forefront.

‘’It should be the image maker to sensitise the people, there is a widening gap between the government and there must be enough information to bridge the gap.”

Continuing Eze said, “I looked around in the budget; I didn’t see the Nigeria Press Council (APCON) and other agencies. Is the government telling us that the agencies are being scrapped, that they can function without personnel?

‘’Who will pay their salary? Just a few months ago, new DGs and Executive Secretaries were appointed.

”Hon. Minister, this is a serious matter for the committee to look into and we shall surely do that.’’.

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