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‘2016 budget inadequate to fund health sector’s budget’

by Muhammad Sani
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By Nancy Simeon & Peter Daniel

The total allocation for Health sector in Federal Government’s 2016 budget appropriation is inadequate to meet the funding needs for the sector, a scorecard that assess the budget process revealed.

A development Experts fear will have adverse effect on the health care delivery system and possible reversal of gains achieved so far in the sector.

The findings was disclosed in Abuja recently at the launch of 2015 and 2016 Mamaye budget scorecard, convened by Evidence for Action, (E4A).

According to the scorecard indicators, the organization finds that major indicators did not meet the criteria for the scoring and this according to E4A country Director, Dr. Tunde Segun, indicates the government of Nigeria is yet to buy into open budget process to strengthen accountability and transparency in spending of health finances.

On the issues of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) participation during budget planning, the scorecard also scored Nigeria low. Dr. Segun said the country have to improve on its budget planning process by ensuring timely information is given to the public on websites, and allocation is adequate as well as timely releases that will revamp the sector.

Also speaking at the launch, lead Director for the Centre for Social Justice, Eze Onyekpere, said budgeting had to involve more stakeholders in the health sector to move forward.

“We must insist on more openness and credibility and not just asking for more funds,” he said.

Health Reporters correspondents reported that the experts expressed worry that relevant indicators like, per capital health budget which ought to be at least $86 by World Health Organisation (WHO) recommendation, 15 per cent Abuja declaration, Federal Government Allocation of one per cent consolidated revenue fund as recommended in
the National Health Act and annual Family Budget Planning of at least $11.350m did not meet the required criteria.

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