Nigeria’s Budget, More Like a Spending Manual, Not a Planning Tool, BudgIT Founder, Seun Onigbinde

Nigeria’s Budget, More Like a Spending Manual, Not a Planning Tool, BudgIT Founder, Seun Onigbinde

  • The co-founder of BudgIT, civic organisation that applies technology for citizen engagement with institutional improvement to facilitate societal change, said Nigeria has fiscal problem
  • Onigbinde said that Nigeria's budget is more of a spending manual rather than a planning tool which enhances quality of lives
  • He said that there are always misplaced priorities in the budget where every agency throws in whatever they like into the budget

BudgIT co-founder, Oluseun Onigbinde, has described Nigeria’s budget as a spending manual rather than a planning tool needed for national development.

Onigbinde who spoke on’s monthly Digital Talk Show stated that a budget is supposed to be impactful and purposeful instead of a spending manual that should show evidence of national planning.

Budget, BudgIT, Onigbinde
BudgIT founder, Oluseun Onigbinde
Source: UGC

According to him, the budget is supposed to capture the plan of the government in reducing issues like maternal mortality, out of school children and job creation in any country.

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Onigbinde said:

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“You cannot link our national budgeting document to our budgeting system, which is not supposed to be. A budget is supposed to be evidence of your planning.
“Like we want to reduce maternal mortality by 25 per cent. We want to increase the job; we want to reduce out of school children by 5 per cent on a yearly basis. I should see evidence that this is happening through the budget."

Misplaced planning and priorities

He said that instead of seeing the focus of government, you see that Nigeria has a long list of items in the budget waiting to be procured, saying that the country does not link budget spending or spending priorities to what is supposed to be planned.

Onigbinde cited fiscal indiscipline as Nigeria’s current corruption problem.

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He said:

“There is a gross fiscal indiscipline. Everybody puts anything they like under any ministry. You see a school of fishery trying to do a solar lighting system. You see the human rights commission trying to construct roads.
“These are the kinds of issues we have with Nigeria’s budget. Everybody throws whatever they like in it. Most of this should start with the lawmakers. They don’t care if the agency that has the mandate is the one doing the job. They just want the job to be done in their community."

Disappointed in Buhari's administration

Onigbinde who resigned his position as technical director in the budget office in 2019, stated that projects captured in any budget should have an impact on people's lives and not be seen as manual to draw funds from.

Onigbinde said:

“You could say we constructed roads or we built five classrooms. Is it improving the quality of learning? You build a PHC, is it transforming healthcare within that community? These are the kind of things you see in the appraisal of the budget to be sure that we are changing lives and you are using the budget as an instrument of policy reform.

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“We had a huge belief in the current administration that they were going to be like a cornerstone of reform, but we have seen that’s not what happened. Because if that had happened someone will not be able to pocket N80 billion."

Nigeria's 2022 budget is riddled with corruption as BudgIT discovers over N378bn hidden duplicated projects

Recall that has reported that Nigeria's civic tech organisation, BudgIT, has revealed that out of 21,108 capital projects in the 2022 approved budget , 460 are duplicated projects worth over N378.9billion.

The budget tracker also raised alarm over inflated projects amounting to billions of Naira directly linked to the State House and the Presidency.

According to Gabriel Okeowo, BudgIT’s country Director the loopholes for fraud in the 2022 FG budget is a crime against the 86million Nigerians living below the poverty line.


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