Nigerian House of Reps probes remittances to Ecological Fund
Gloria Essien, Abuja
The House of Representatives has mandated its Committee on Ecological Fund to investigate the total accruals into the Ecological Fund in the last 12 years as well as evaluate the disbursement of the fund according to the provisions of the law.
The committee is to also evaluate the disbursement of the Ecological Fund in line with the provisions of the 1999 constitution from 2010 to March 2022.
The committee will conduct public hearings with all major stakeholders on the effective and efficient utilisation of the Ecological Fund and report back within six (6) weeks for further legislative action.
The resolutions followed a motion on the need to investigate the total consolidation accrual and utilisation of Ecological Fund sponsored by Hon. Femi Bamisile.
He noted that “the existence of the Ecological Fund as intervention fund set up by the Federal Government of Nigeria was to address multifarious ecological challenges across the country.”
“The Federal Government, the thirty-six (36) States of the Federation, the 774 Local Government Areas and the Federal Capital Territory receive funds through the Federal Allocation Committee (FAC) as shares from the Ecological Fund.
“Apart from the annual statutory appropriations, four Agencies of the Federal Government draw funds from the 1% share of the Federal Government allocated to ecology and derivation fund according to their respective enabling laws and the Agencies are; the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) by virtue of Section 13(2) (b) of its Act, draws 20%, National Agency for the Great Green Wall (NAGGW) by virtue of Section 12 (2) (b) of its Act, draws 15%. While the North-East Development Commission (NEDC) by virtue of Section 14(12) (b) of its Act, draws 10% and the National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA) by virtue of Section 18 (2) (a) of its Act, draws 10%.
“Efforts at making beneficiaries of the Ecological Fund accountable for their accrued shared funds in the last few years have been ignored”.
In his contribution to the debate, the Deputy Speaker, Hon Idris Wase said that there had been queries as to how the fund was utilized.
He therefore charged the committee to be thorough in their investigation
Adopting the motion, the House directed the Committee to conduct public hearings with all major stakeholders on the effective and efficient utilization of the Ecological Fund and report back within six weeks for further legislative inputs.