Senate Questions N1bn Budget For Minister’s Trip

The Senate Committee on Trade has questioned the Ministry of Trade and Investment’s planned N1 billion budget for a Geneva trip.

During defense of 2024 budget estimates, panelist Senator Adams Oshiomhole faulted the “over bloated” delegation.

Oshiomhole argued experts in country offices could deliver at lower costs while urging industrialization over import dependency.

He also accused Minister Anite Uzoka of chronic absence from office, saying she should resign if preferring her roles at Bank of Industry.

The Minister said she could perform duties from anywhere while her office undergoes renovations.

On Balance of Trade data, Uzoka claimed the ministry had no records, an view rejected by Oshiomhole who said agencies like CBN and Customs hold such figures.

In driving local production for population-fueled industries, the lawmaker stressed halting toothpick and tire imports.

The interaction reflects lawmakers’ vigilance towards MDAs’ budgets and calls for economic self-reliance through import substitution industrialization.

More scrutiny will be required of agencies’ plans as the budget defence process continues across sectors.