The Senate Committee on Water Resources has approved the 2021 budget proposal of the Ogun-Osun River Basin Development Authority despite protests by the agency’s board.
An investigation by our correspondent revealed that the chairman of the board, Sola Lawal, petitioned the Senate panel, asking it to halt the budget approval process because it (the board) was not carried along.
But when contacted, the chairman of the Senate panel, Senator Bello Mandiya, denied knowledge of such a petition.
He, however, agreed that there could be infighting between the management of the agency and its board but that none of them had involved his committee.
Mandiya said, “Even if there is infighting between the board and the management, it is not known to us. We didn’t receive any petition from the board.”
Meanwhile, a petition said to have been authored by Lawal sighted by our correspondent revealed that the board advised the panel against approving the proposed fiscal document.
Part of the petition read, “My Dear Distinguished Senator, please permit me to congratulate you on the job well done regarding the budget defence of the Ogun-Osun River Basin Authority.
“I need to quickly bring it to your knowledge that the board was never permitted by the Managing Director to vet the 2021 proposed budget currently before you.
“The board questioned the rationale behind allocating a whopping 78 per cent of the budget to only the contract awarding Engineering Department.
“This is when the Agricultural Services and two others that form the essence of the setting up of the Authority as a means of developing farming, mass employment, and empowerment are left with a paltry 22 per cent.
“Please, we seek the intervention of the National Assembly to get the document back to the board to do the needful particularly since the MD’s tenure ends in December.”