Connect with us

Headlines News

Agric ministry denies spending N18.9bn on bush clearing

Published

on

Bush Clearing Dr Mohammad Mahmood Abubakar, Minister of Agriculture NLTP

The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has dismissed reports that it spent N18.9 billion on bush clearing during the COVID-19 lockdown in 2020.

Reacting to the report, Director of Information, Dr. Joel O. Oruche, said in a statement, that the figures which emanated from the House Public Account Committee, was quoted out of context.

Oruche said that the ministry spent on N2.5billion on bush clearing and land preparation of 3,200 hectares in eight states, namely, Osun, Ekiti, Edo, Cross River, Kaduna, Kwara, Plateau and Ogun.

The statement explained that the other projects executed by the ministry during the COVID-19 pandemic is what makes the N18.9 billion quoted by the House Committee.

Advertisement

The ministry said that the projects include construction of rural roads in the six geo-political zones, soil sampling and mapping, farmers registration as well as rehabilitation and the equipping of four national soil laboratories.

“The attention of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has been drawn to a publication in the media on the report by the House of Representatives Committee on Public Account, which stated that N18.9billion was used for bush clearing during the COVID-19 lockdown.

“The ministry wishes to state that if the statement emanated from the House Public Account Committee, the Committee must have been quoted out of context.

“To put the record straight however, the Ministry at no time received any audit query to warrant a summon by the Committee.

“It is also important to state that the Ministry did not spend N18.9billion in bush clearing as reported.

Advertisement

“The Ministry only carried out bush clearing and land preparation of 3,200 hectares in eight states of Osun, Ekiti, Edo, Cross River, Kaduna, Kwara, Plateau and Ogun as allocated by state governments for N2.5billion.

“In addition, other projects executed by the Ministry during the COVID-19 period that sums up to the total sum quoted included the following: construction of rural roads in the six geo-political zones of the country, soil sampling and mapping, farmers registration as well as rehabilitation and the equipping of four National Soil Laboratories in Umudike, Ibadan, Kaduna and Abuja.”

Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Copyright © 2016 - 2022 ChronicleNG