Pull media budgets of all MDAs to information ministry- Rep

Beloved JohnDecember 19, 20233 min

The House of Representatives committee on information has urged for increased funding for the ministry of information by aggregating all media budgets under its purview 

Rep Fatoba on information ministry
Rep. Fatoba

The House of Representatives committee on information has called on the President, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to ensure that there’s an increase in the funds allocated to the ministry of information in the 2024 budget.

Expressing concern about the N2.59 billion budgetary allocation of the ministry, the committee asked for an upward review of the budget.

According to the chairman of the committee, Rep. Olusola Fatoba (APC, Ekiti), underfunding the ministry will be at the detriment of the country’s populace.

He made this appeal on Tuesday, December 19, 2023, during a media briefing at the National Assembly in Abuja.

The chairman also urged that agencies under the ministry be adequately funded to allow them function effectively.

Fatobo disclosed that the Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria, and the Nigeria Press Council, two agencies under the ministry, have no budget allocation in 2024.

He said: “The agencies are expected to generate revenue for the country by running after the people they are regulating, but were not allotted anything in the budget. I don’t think this is the right thing.”

He also noted that the National Orientation Agency (NOA) was grossly underfunded despite the daunting tasks before it.

“We were shocked when we realised that the total budget for the ministry of information with the agencies under it is only N2.59 b. This is very low for the ministry considering the role it has to play. We don’t think the budget can help them get anywhere, especially into the nooks and crannies of the country.

“The job of the National Orientation Agency is information dissemination which is critical given that we are at a time when fake news is flying around. Even our social values and ethics are not the way they should be. These are issues that the National Orientation Agency is supposed to address. But now, they have less than N200m in their capital budget. How are they going to function very well with that meagre budget?

“If you look at the total budget of MDAs in the country, you will realise that what was budgeted for media and information sharing is close to N40 billion. We are soliciting that this fund should be gathered and given to the ministry that is responsible for information dissemination. The Ministry of Information is the one with this duty,” he noted.

Beloved John

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