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A’Ibom 2020 budget: Group says N4bn for education “too paltry”

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A Non-Governmental Organisation, Anti-corruption Network (ACONET), has expressed displeasure over the paltry sum of N4 billion allocated to education sector in the 2020 budget of Akwa Ibom.

The State Coordinator of ACONET, Mrs. Ann Udonte, expressed this concern on Tuesday in Uyo, during a stakeholders’ media interaction as part of activities to mark the 2019 International Anti-Corruption Day.

Udonte said that the allocation was “far below” UNESCO recommendation of 26 per cent for the education sector.

She said that there was high level of infrastructure decay in some public schools across the state as well as inadequate health facilities.

According to her, this is an indication of lack of government’s commitment to the sectors.

“Though the Akwa Ibom government is contesting statistics indicating that it had the highest number of out-of-school children in Nigeria, its 2020 budget allocation to the education sector shows that it is not committed to the sector.

“A paltry sum of N4 billion was allocated to the education sector, out of a total budget proposal of N597 billion.

“This is so far below the UNESCO recommendation of 26 per cent. This shows how important education is in the order of things in the state.

The Akwa Ibom Anti-corruption Network calls on the state government to adopt as important, the need to prioritise the education, health and agricultural sectors throughout the budgeting process,” Udonte said.

Also speaking, State Director, National Orientation Agency (NOA), Mr Enoh Uyoh, blamed the deep-seated corruption in the country on the effect of many years of military rule.

Uyoh, however, said that corruption was worse in the political system of the country.

“If you want to see corruption, join a political party and see what they are doing. Even the process of getting people to elective positions is corrupt.

“Our duty in the agency is to mobilise, enlighten and continue to tell the citizens what corruption has done to this country,” Uyoh said.

He assured Nigerians that the present administration was committed to tackling corruption in the country.

Edited by: Ephraims Sheyin
(NAN)
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