By Christiana Ekpa
The Minister of Transportation , Rotimi Ameachi yesterday disclosed that, the Ministry only achieved 16.5% performance implementation of the N7.44trillion 2017 budget
Ameach who made disclosed this during budget 2018 budget defence session with the Senate Committee on Land Transport said, out of the N192.895billion appropriated for the Ministry for capital expenditure, only N31.932 billion was released to the ministry representing 16.5% of the appropriated sum.
He added that even out of the released N31.932billion , only N20.862 billion have been spent so far.
He however said that the ministry achieved 43.6% in the implementation of the N528.800million overhead votes by getting N230.588million out of which N180.514m has been expended.
Apart from the low implementation of the Ministry’s 2017 budget, Ameachi also disclosed that many of the critical capital projects to be executed in the 2018 budget are to be funded through financiers due to low revenue generation by government.
“We sought and got Mr President’s approval to source for financiers for various rail projects for development.
“ Negotiations are ongoing and we may need some contributions depending on the discussions”, he said.
He highlighted the projects under the proposed arramgement to be Kano-Katsina-Jibiya to Maradi in Niger Republic, the new standard guage rail from Porthhacourt to Maiduguri passing through Enugu, Lafia Makurdi, Gombe with branches to Owerri, Onitsha, Akwa. Abakaliki, Yola , Jalungo and Damaturu.
Others are extension of Itakpe – Aladja (Warri) to Abuja and Warri Port and others.
The Chairman of the Committee, Senator Olugbenga Ashafa ( APC Lagos East), said the 2017 budget performance for the ministry was too poor to be repeated in 2018.
He directed the ministry to forward to the committee., clear cut plans it has for execition of projected capital projects in the coming year.