Budget: Senate begs ministry to inject fund for own project
OWEDE AGBAJILEKE, Abuja
Senate Committee on Information Communication Technology (ICT) on Monday begged the Ministry of Communications to tinker with its 2018 budget to provide funds for its annual conference on cyber space security.
The committee chaired by Abdulfatai Buhari, made the request during the 2018 budget defence session of the ministry in Abuja.
Speaking after the minister of communications, Adebayo Shittu, presented the N6.94 billion 2018 budget estimates of the ministry, vice chairman of the Committee, Foster Ogola, expressed concern that there was no provision for annual conference on cyberspace security the committee started with last year.
He said: “Mr Minister, I have gone through all your proposed expenditure of the 2018 budget of your ministry without seeing any headline or item capturing the annual cyberspace security workshop started by this committee last year.
“We appreciate your ministry’s funding of last year’s conference and since it is an annual programme, we expected you to have factored it into your ministry’s 2018 budget projections.
“The programme is very important since it is aimed at addressing our highly vulnerable cyber space”.
The request was further reinforced by the chairman of the committee who said funding of the annual programme by the ministry should be part of its priorities towards getting the required strategies of fortifying the Nigerian cyberspace.
In his response, the minister assured the committee of doing the needful.
He, however, pleaded with lawmakers to fast-track work on amendment bill to the Cyber Council Act towards empowering the ministry in the monitoring and management of cyber space activities in the country.
He informed the committee that despite the failure of the country to raise $22.5million as 15percent counterpart funds for installation of two satellites last year in collaboration with China Exim Bank, the country would have them this year.
According to him, the new arrangement for the installation of the satellites is solely funded by the China Exim Bank through necessary financial agreement and documentations with the Ministry of Finance.
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