Naija News reports that the federal government of Nigeria had approached the National Assembly, seeking the lawmakers’ approval for the establishment of a N500 billion COVID-19 crisis intervention fund.
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, led the Federal Government’s delegation which met with the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila on Saturday to work out the modalities.
The finance minister was accompanied by senior officials from the ministry to the meeting which was also attended by the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege; Deputy Speaker, Idris Wase, and some other principal officers from both chambers.
Reacting in a statement on Saturday night through its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP advised lawmakers to examine the expenditure layout, put adequate clauses to eliminate diversion and ensure prudence.
The main opposition party charged the National Assembly to demand full details of how the N500bn would be spent to combat the coronavirus pandemic.
“The PDP insists that such information should also include details of what each state of the federation gets; the parameters for allocations, the monitoring system and foolproof measures to block all loopholes and check fraud.
“This money, which is to be mopped up from various special government accounts, belongs to Nigerians. As such, the National Assembly must ensure that it is fully utilised for their well-being”, it added.