Abuja to do biometric audit of staff in Area Councils

Six area councils in Abuja shared N2 billion in August.

The Federal Capital Territory Administration has concluded arrangements to conduct a biometric audit of all workers in the six Area Councils of Abuja, next week, Minister of State for Abuja, Olajumoke Akinjide, has said.

Plans for the biometric exercise are coming just as the six councils on Friday shared N2.053 billion revenue allocations, for August, from the Federation Account Allocation Committee, FAAC and the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme, SURE-P.

Mrs. Akinjide said, during the Abuja Area Councils Joint Account Allocation Committee meeting in Abuja, that the allocation represents an increase of N267 million, or 15 per cent over the preceding month’s figure of N1.786 billion.

“We have gone through the procurement processes and have engaged a consultant to undertake a biometric audit of all workers in the Area Councils,” the Minister, who presided over the meeting said. “We want to ensure that the workers in the Area Councils are genuine and also make sure that they are qualified for the positions they are holding.”

On the shared revenue, she explained that Value Added Tax, accounted for the lion’s share of N1.054billion of the total allocation to the six Area Councils – Abaji, Abuja Municipal, Bwari, Gwagwalada, Kuje and Kwali.

The Abuja Area Councils had received VAT of N796.29 million for the month of July 2012.

The minister disclosed that the statutory revenue allocation was N675.20 million; SURE-P, N113.54 million; refund by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, N23.10 million; Abuja Administration’s 10 per cent Internally Generated Revenue, N145.92 million; and exchange rate gain of N41.86 million.

Of the N2.053 billion revenue allocation, the FCTA disbursed N836.24 million to the Abuja Universal Basic Education Board for primary school teachers in the six area councils; N95.04 million to Abuja Area Councils Pension Board, being 15 per cent pension fund as statutorily required; and N20.53 million to Abuja Area Councils Service Commission, being one per cent training fund, also statutorily required.

The net revenue allocation of N1.101 billion was shared by the area councils, with Abuja Municipal receiving N239.46 million; Gwagwalada, N192.25 million; Bwari, N187.60 million; Abaji, N175.93 million; Kuje, N165.38 million; and Kwali, N141.24 million.

Ms. Akinjide further stated that the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Finance paid N113.54 million to the Abuja Area Councils being their share of the SURE-P Programme for the two months of August and September 2012.

A breakdown of the distribution of the SURE-P funds shows that Abaji was allocated N13.93 million; Abuja Municipal, N33.54 million; Bwari, N18.58 million; Gwagwalada, N17 million; Kuje, N14.90 million; and Kwali, N15.59 million.

She stated that the chairmen of the Area Councils were expected to develop programmes for which the SURE-P funds would be utilized.

“The Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme was designed by the Federal Government to focus on capacity building, wealth creation, and critical infrastructure development,” she noted.

According to the minister, the FCTA earned N1.459 billion from Internally Generated Revenue as at September 21, with Abuja Geographical Information System being the largest contributor with N652.09 million.

The Abuja Metropolitan Management Council realised N229.93 million; Directorate of Road Traffic Services, N197.30 million; Abuja Water Board, N169.80 million; Abuja Environmental Protection Board, N159.08 million; and Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat, N23.89 million.

The Secretary of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria in Abuja, and Chairman of Abaji Area Council, Yahaya Muhammad, said the Area Councils’ Chairmen, canvassed a Special Fund from the Federal Government for the development of Abuja.

Mr. Muhammad said the chairmen want the Federal Government to give the FCT a Special Allocation, as is given to the oil producing areas.

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