Minister decries low allocation to information ministry in 2024 budget

Minister of information and national orientation Alhaji Mohammed Idris has decried low budgetary allocation for the ministry in 2024 budget.

‘For us at the federal ministry of information and national orientation, we are not happy with the kind of budget that we have because for a country that has a budget of over 28 trillion, the allocation being made for the ministry of information and national orientation is to say the least very meagre,” he said.

The minister stated this Tuesday when he received members of the House of Representatives Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values, led by its chairman Hon. Olusola Fatoba who came for oversight function at the ministry’s headquarters in Abuja.

Idris however, commended the committee and executive for its commitment in ensuring that the ministry gets appropriate funding through supplementary budget.

“Having said that, I know the efforts that members of the committee are still doing, I know that the executive is still looking at the issue of the federal ministry of information and national orientation to ensure that we get the appropriate funding that we require to transform this very critical sector,” he said.
He said sometimes the ministry go out of its way and use the contact and goodwill it has to get things done.
“Sometimes we go the extra mile using our contact within the industry, using our goodwill to get things ordinarily we have to pay for get it done .
“I think that Nigerians especially the media are very ready to help. But off course we also know that they are in business.
“They need to power their generator, they need to pay their staff, therefore we also need to pay them. We should not take our relationship with them for granted,” he said.

The minister said given the critical role of the ministry in educating Nigerians on government programmes and reorientation of the citizens, its deserves better allocation.

He said: “Let me recall that at the last meeting we had at the national assembly, officials of the ministry of information and national orientation and members of house committee on information and national orientation had a very long session on how the information and national orientation sector of our country can be improved.

“I know the efforts that the chairman and members of this committee together with Senate committee on information and national orientation put to ensure that ministry of information and national orientation is properly funded to execute its mandate.

“Although, I know that their efforts or our combine efforts has not given us the kind of budget that we should have for this ministry in view of the transformative journey that the ministry has embarked , we believe that the ministry of information and national orientation has a critical role to play in ensuring that everything that the government wants to do is properly communicated and Nigerians gets to know first hand government policies and programmes for their understanding, buy in, support and occasionally their criticisms.”

He his remarks, Fatoba promised to ensure improved budgetary allocation for the ministry in the 2025 budget to enable its carry out its functions effectively.