Senate Committee on Sports laments NSC’s 2014 ‘paltry’ capital budget

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Director General, National Sports Commission, Gbenga Elegbeleye
Director General, National Sports Commission, Gbenga Elegbeleye

The Senate Committee on Sports on Tuesday in Abuja said that the National Sports Commission (NSC)’s 2014 Capital budget of N1.4 billion is too small to yield results.

Chairman of the committee, Adamu Gumba, said this after the commission’s Director General, Gbenga Elegbeleye, presented the 2014 budget proposal to the committee. Gumba said the capital budget was embarrasing and not up to the cost of feasibility project for another ministry.
N5.54 billion was budgeted for NSC’s activities in 2014. N4.11 billion of the budget estimate was recurrent cost while capital items would gulp N1.42 billion. Out of the recurrent cost, N2.92 billion was for overhead cost, while N1.19 billion would be spent on personnel cost.
“Quite frankly, this capital budget is too small because all those projects you started in 2013 are now abandoned. The ones you wanted to complete last year have not been provided for this year, so they are now abandoned. If you show somebody that these are all the capital projects in the Ministry of Sports for 2014, it is very embarrassing and shameful. This is not up to the cost of feasibility study for one project in the FCT or Ministry of Works,’’ Gumba said.
The senate committee chairman added that with the limited cost, the commission should prioritise its 2014 projects to either complete the projects already started or to spread the funds across the projects.
Gumba however advised that the NSC should ensure that the completed mini-stadia are handed over to the local governments for grassroots sports development.
“Since the Federal Government has shown interest in developing our sports from the grass roots and some of the mini-stadia have been completed, they should be handed over. The NSC should ensure that the stadia are handed over to the various local governments so that they can be used and as a result, talents will be discovered just as we expected. This is to ensure that the benefit of constructing these mini stadia will be yielded as soon as possible,’’ he said.

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