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Nigeria May Face Sanctions over Undisbursed IFAD Funds

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According to IFAD, Nigeria will pay service charge for unutilised funds returned at the expiration of IFAD-assisted Community Based Natural Resource Management Programme (CBNRMP) next year.

IFAD Country Programme Officer in Nigeria, Dr Ben Odemena, disclosed this at the weekend, urging regulators of the sector to ensure they put the funds to judicious use.
The CBNRMP projects, which are co-sponsored by federal government and Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), are operational in Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo, Imo, Ondo and Rivers.

The programme officer said that apart from the service charge on the un-utilised funds, future development programme for the region would be hampered.

He explained that out of the $15 million earmarked for IFAD programmes, only 18.8 per cent had been disbursed under the component for village infrastructure.

Odemena said only 16.4 per cent of the fund had been disbursed so far under the livelihood development programmes, while natural resource management component had eight per cent disbursement.

He said with only 15 months to programme expiration, Abia had drawn only 39.7 per cent of its share of IFAD fund, while Akwa Ibom had drawn only 38 per cent.

Bayelsa had drawn only 27 per cent of its share of the funds, Cross River, 57.6; per cent, Delta, 45 per cent; Edo, 42 per cent; Imo, 18 per cent; Ondo, 76 per cent; and Rivers, 42 per cent.

Odemena said that the country office would conduct a follow-up mission in November to supervise compliance with wind-up guidelines.

He advised all programme state officers to close all activities, including procurement and shading of staff strength, six months ahead of closure.

In his speech, the Chairman of the session, Dr Oyesola Oyebanji, said that the programme could have achieved much if states had paid their counterpart funds.

Oyebanji, who is the Chief Technical Officer, National Programme for Food Security, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said that state governments were not committed to agriculture.

He said that development in agriculture could go a long way to reduce unemployment and also mitigate crime and insecurity

Oyebanji urged the meeting to resolve to meet with governors of the benefiting states and impress on them to pay their counterpart IFAD funds to enable them to draw from the funds.

Article Credit: Thisdaylive

Updated 4 Years ago

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