The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has described as malicious, publications by the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) that the Federal Capital Territory Administration(FCTA) engaged in bogus budgets.
The two political parties had accused the FCTA of budgeting the sum of N7billion for the construction of two Abuja City Gates; N5 billion for the rehabilitation of commercial sex workers and N4 billion for the construction of First Lady’s Office. They also accused the FCTA of padding the budget for the construction of the Vice President’s official residence.
Debunking the publications, however,? National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh described the ACN and CPC as disparate coalition seeking to wrest power through deceit, lies and deliberate misinformation.
The party denied the existence of such sums for the projects and challenged the parties to prove otherwise, more so that the projects were part of the nation’s centenary celebration.
“There is no provision for the construction of the Abuja City Gate in the FCT 2013 budget and there is nowhere the FCT earmarked N5 billion for the rehabilitation of commercial sex workers in the said budget. We challenge the parties to prove us wrong.
“The truth is that the FCT administration has nothing to do with the proposed Abuja City Gates. The project is one of the items making up the Centenary City to be financed by the private sector? in earnest of? corporate social responsibility towards the centenary celebrations. Neither is the FCTA connected to the Centenary City nor to the City Gate, as such does not exist in its budget.
“The FCTA did not provide the sum of N5 billion for the rehabilitation of commercial sex workers in the 2013 budget. What is public knowledge however that is the overall budget of the Social Development Department of the FCTA is N4.7 billion out of which the FCTA slated only N150 million for routine enforcement and general management of the rehabilitation centres including training and empowerment of rehabilitated sex workers. In fact, the budget was reduced from N225 million budgeted last year. Therefore, to tell Nigerians that the FCTA budgeted N5 billion for the rehabilitation of prostitutes when it is clear that only N150 million was budgeted for the sub-head under which it falls is to say the least despicable,” Metuh explained in a statement.
On the proposed building for the African First Ladies Peace Mission (AFLPM) for which the sum of N4billion has been provided for in the budget, the PDP spokesman said it would be of immense benefit to the nation at the long run, just as the proposed Vice President’s building shall.
“Contrary to the odious and deliberate distortion of facts by the opposition, the building is not for the Nigerian First Lady. The complex on completion is to host the AFLPM which has the backing of the African Union as an instrument for championing women and youth development.