Plateau State: N12 billion error in 2014 budget explained

Lawmaker say that the discrepancy was due to a “mathematical error.”

The Plateau House of Assembly on Tuesday in Jos said that the N12 billion discrepancy in the state’s N225 billion approved budget for 2014 was from the legislature.

The state governor, Jonah Jang, had on December 19, 2013, presented a budget proposal of N228.7 billion for 2014 to the House of Assembly. After the debate on the bill by the lawmakers, it was approved with a figure of N213 billion and sent to the governor for assent. But the bill, which was signed into law by the governor on February 14, bore a figure of N225 billion, showing a difference of N12 billion from the figure approved by the legislature.

While signing the bill, Mr. Jang had said that what he assented to was what was approved by the lawmakers.

Reacting to the difference between the budget as approved by the Assembly and the one assented to by the governor, Chairman of the Assembly’s Committee on Information, Diket Plang, said it was a mathematical error from the Assembly.

Mr. Plang told journalists that the Assembly actually approved the bill with a figure of N225 billion, reducing the original figure proposed by the governor by only about N3.7 billion.

“The N12-billion increase in the figure approved by the Assembly and what the governor assented to arose from a mathematical error by the assembly,” he said.

He explained that the error was due to wrong computations of the capital expenditure of the Ministry of Education, saying that the figures were not properly situated.

According to him, the governor discovered this and made the correction and arrived at N225 billion which he signed into law.

Mr. Plang could, however, not confirm if the governor contacted the assembly on the discrepancy to enable it to make necessary adjustments in its records.

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