2022 budget: Army earmarks N43.3bn for training of 3,885 cadets, 18,000 recruits

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The House of Representatives Committee on Army has urged the Chief of Army Staff Maj-Gen Farouk Yahaya and other senior officers to adopt and fastrack counter insurgency training of officers and men of the military force to enable it tackle the ravaging insecurity.

Chairman of the House Committee Hon.Abudulrazak Namdas gave the charge to the Army Chief and senior officers during the 2021 budget reveiew and 2020 budget defence by the House Committe on Thursday in Abuja.

The lawmaker said the Army authorities should pay attention to trainings and retrainings of officers and men in counter terrorism or counter insurgency.

He had assured the Army officers of continuos support in terms of funding even as he also called on the President Muhammadu Buhari to declare the bandits terrorists.

He said:”We call on President Muhammadu Buhari to declare bandits as terrorists.“As a Committee, we ‘ll continue to support the Army. However, funds appropriated must be judiciusly used”.

The Adamawa State born lawmaker also enjoined the Army officer’s hierachy to ensure that the Training and Doctrines Command TRADOC a training institution of the military is very functional.

Meanwhile the Nigeria Army has proposed the sum of N43.3 billion for its 2022 budget for the efficiency of its operations.

Commander of the Training and Doctrine Command TRADOC of the Army Maj-Gen Stevenson Olugbenga who represented the Army Chief presented the budget estimates to the House Committee for consideration and approval.

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He hinted that the budget estimate is for the training of officers adding that its component includes personnel cost, overhead and capital expenditure.

He also told the House Committee that the budget for training of personnel is to cater for all the 3,885 cadets and 18,000 recruits absorbed into the Army for the defence of the nation’s territorial integrity

Meanwhile, the Public Accounts Committee PAC, of the House of Representatives is calling for both administrative and financial autonomy for the Office of the Auditor General of the Federation, OAuGF because of its functions and for transparency

The Chairman of the Committee, Hon Oluwole Oke, (Osun, PDP) disclosed in Abuja on Thursday at the 2022 Budget Defence exercise of the Office of the Auditor General of the Federation .

Oke who said that a bill being sponsored by him before the House which had already passed the second reading lamented that caging the Operations of the all important Office through financial and administrative control eroded transparency and accountability

He cited instances such as when from the Auditor General’s Report, it was established that between 2013 and 2020, a sum of N7 trillion was expended from the service wide vote on the OAuGF, prastatals and agencies under it, without the Office of the Auditor General feeling any impact or having any knowledge of such expenditure.

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Hon Oke noted that such a serious infraction on the part of the Executive arm of government that controls the vote would have been followed to its logical conclusion if the OAuGF had been autonomous in every aspect.

The Committee helsman then advised the OAuGF to embark on intensive lobby to effect an increase in its annual budgetary allocations and assured that the committee would laise with the House Leadership with a view to placing the Office of the Auditor General of the Federation on the First Line Charge in budgetary funding

Oke announced the constitution ofa 7-man sub committee, headed by Committee Deputy chairman with members drawn from the six geo-political zones in the country to work together with OAuGF office towards producing a tenable report that would expeditiously facilitate the direct funding of the Office.

Earlier, the Auditor-General of the Federation Mr Adolphus Aghughu had announced a proposed budget of N9.64 billion for the year 2022 if the Office must function optimally.

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By Okoye David
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