The Federal Government will spend additional N6.129bn on a new head office for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in 2017.
According to the Punch, This was apart from a total of N7.912bn budgeted for the same project in the 2016 Budget. The commission’s current head office is located on Fomella Street, off Adetokunbo Ademola Crescent, Wuse II, Abuja.
According to a copy of the details of the 2017 Appropriation Bill currently before the National Assembly obtained by our correspondent, N4.584bn would be spent on the completion of the ongoing construction of the new head office.
The sum of N1.1bn was also earmarked for the furnishing of the yet-to-be completed building while N244.727m was budgeted for consultancy for the new head office.
According to the budget document, the EFCC will also be spending N60m on the completion of its Lagos office building and N10m on consultancy for the same project.
The commission is also expected to spend N737.85m on the training of its members of staff during the fiscal year.
This is against the N111.587m budgeted for the same purpose in 2016. Out of the sum, N707.85m would be spent on local training while international training would gulp N30m.
N76.587m was budgeted for local training while N35m went to international training in 2016. Travel and transport for the commission got N415.848m in the 2017 appropriation bill.
Further breakdown shows that local travel and transport (training) gets N41.716m; local travel and transport (others) gets N249.672m; international travel and transport (training) gets N100m while international travel and transport (others) gets N24.460m.
The commission will also be spending N250.536m on legal services during the year. This is a drastic reduction in the N339.939m budgeted for the same item in the 2016 budget.
A large percentage of the sum is expected to be paid to lawyers handling the commission’s numerous prosecutions. With the renewed anti-corruption fight of the present administration, the EFCC has witnessed an increase in corruption cases being prosecuted in courts.
Majority of the cases currently being prosecuted by the commission are those related to the alleged arms contract scandal involving a former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.); as well as the $115m alleged scam involving a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke.
Former ministers, ex-service chiefs, chieftains of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, bank chiefs among other individuals and firms are currently standing trials in relation to the cases.
There are expectations that the commission will still arrest and prosecute more suspects in connection with the cases.
Various sums have also been budgeted for the commission to cater for industrial and security equipment, stationery, computer and printers as well as library books among others during the year.