December 13, 2023

Minister under fire at Senate for proposing to spend N1bn on overseas trips

Doris Uzoka Anite

Minister of Trade, Industry and Investment, Doris Nkiruka-Anite Uzoka

“I see that you intend to travel to Geneva next year and you have budgeted over N1billion for that”, said senate.

By Henry Umoru

THE Senate has taken a swipe at the Minister of Trade, Industry  and Investment, Doris Nkiruka-Anite for proposing to spend N1 billion on trip to Geneva in 2024, as contained in next year’s budget of the ministry, just as the minister said that the ministry has no record of the nation’s balance of trade.

This was revealed, yesterday, when the minister appeared before the Senator  Sadiq Umar (APC,  Kwara North) led joint Senate and House of Representatives Committee on Trade, Industry and Investment to defend the budget.

READ ALSO: 2024 budget: Senate, Reps to vote funds for National Library, others

Plans to spend N1 billion next year on trips to  only Geneva  was contained  in the budget document submitted to the committee as there were reactions and criticisms from members of the committee, who were not happy with the figure they described as very outrageous.

Trouble started when the Minister was asked to address the committee and give an explanation on the performance of the 2023 budget before seeking for fresh funds.

Soon after her address, the  former Governor of Edo State, Adams Oshiomhole (APC, Edo North) immediately took the Minister up on  plans  to embark on trip to Geneva with a N1billion.

Oshiomhole who urged the minister to use experts in her office to achieve results rather than embark on trip that would gulp such a big  amount of money,  said: “I see that you intend to travel to Geneva next year and you have budgeted over N1billion for that. We can’t keep going on with over blotted teams on abroad trips. Use the experts we have in your offices in those country to save cost.”