UBEC Laments States’ Inability To Access N46b Fund For Basic Education

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The Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) yesterday said over N46.2 billion matching grants for the development of public primary and junior secondary schools has remained unaccessed by some states.

Acting Executive Secretary of UBEC, Prof. Bala Zakari, stated this during an oversight visit to the Commission by the Senate Committee on Basic and Secondary Education yesterday in Abuja.

While presenting the 2022 capital budget implementation report, Zakari said N162 billion was allocated to the states as UBE grants between 2019 and 2022, while N116 billion was accessed by 36 states and FCT.

He said: “The total un-accessed UBE matching grants as at April 30, 2023, by the 36 states and the FCT, stands at N46.2 billion. Between 2019 and 2022, N162 billion was allocated to the states being UBE grants, and as at April 30, 2023, N116 billion was accessed by 36 states and the FCT, Abuja, representing 71.52 per cent.

“As at the time of reporting, only 11 states accessed the 2022 matching grant fund.”

On the levels of UBE matching grant accessed by states, Zakari said in 2019, 35 states and FCT accessed 2019 allocation, with Anambra State yet to access the grant as at April 30, 2023.

On the 2020 matching grant, Zakari said: “30 states and the FCT have accessed matching grants. Abia, Adamawa, Anambra, Ebonyi, Kwara and Ogun states are yet to access the 2020 UBE matching grant as at April 30, 2023. 29 states have accessed the 2022 matching grant projects, while seven states and the FCT are yet to.”

Chairman of the Senate Committee on Basic and Secondary Education, Ibrahim Gaidam, said it was important to ensure that money released by the government was used for the right purpose.

Gaidam, who was represented by Vice Chairman of the Committee, Akon Eyakenyi, said the visit was to also confirm implementation of the commission’s 2022 budget and proposal for 2023.

The committee stressed the need for governors to key into UBEC projects by accessing its funds in order to shore up the country’s basic education sector.

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