Budget 2017: FG to reconstruct roads with economic benefit

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From Kemi Yesufu and Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja

Minster of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, has said the Federal Government will focus on the completion of roads with economic benefit this year.

Speaking at the budget defence for his ministry at the House of Representatives, he said the 2017 budget of the Works component was based on six priority areas that will focus on critical economic routes with heaviest traffic.

He said N150.4 billion or 52 per cent of capital budget was proposed for such routes, while the second priority roads or agriculture producing areas would gulp N43 billion or 17.8 per cent of the capital expenditure.

He also said roads related to petroleum products haulage as well as another set of roads dealing with agriculture producing locations would take N8.9 billion  or three per cent of the budget.

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The  Minister pointed out that provisions were made for roads with  counterpart funding, while roads within government tertiary institutions would also be given attention beginning on geo-political zone basis.

He said the Ministry has  capacity to achieve 100 per cent performance for 2017 considering a  53 per cent budget performance for releases that began in June 2016.

Speaking on the 2016 budget performance, the Minister said N456 billion was appropriated for the three ministries out of which  N301,850 billion was appropriated to Works.

He said capital expenditure of the Works component got N284,108 billion out of which N200 billion was released to the ministry, while the agencies under under the Ministry got N84 billion.

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Fashola told lawmakers the personnel cost of the Works Ministry was managed by Office of the Accountant General of the Federation (OAGF).

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