The Permanent Secretary of the State House, Mr Jalal Arabi, has faulted media reports that the State House Medical Centre had from 2015 to 2017 received N11.01bn as appropriation.

Arabi said: “Out of the total Capital Appropriation of N2,941,062,044.00 and Recurrent Appropriation of N465,935,358.00 for the period under reference, only the sum of N969,681,821.53 (representing 32.97%) for Capital and N225,575,200.60 (representing 48.41%) for Recurrent was actually released.”

The permanent secretary, who noted that there was zero capital allocation for the centre in 2017, said out of the N331,730,211.00 recurrent appropriation for this year, the actual amount released up to September was N91,370,053.60, representing 27.54 percent.

He said the above figures were verifiable from the Ministries of Finance, Budget and National Planning, explaining that “During the three-year period under review (indeed two years since no capital allocation for 2017), and despite the shortfalls between budgetary provisions and actual releases, the Medical Centre continued to provide free services to the over 10,000 registered patients annually.”

The permanent secretary admitted that “In addition, the centre has continued to execute ongoing projects.”

N/Assembly members get free treatment at clinic

Meanwhile, the Presidency has revealed that apart from over 10,000 registered patients that patronise the State House Medical Centre annually, members of the National Assembly also benefit from the facility’s free services.

Arabi, in a statement issued yesterday on his behalf by the Deputy Director of Information, Mr Attah Esa, also listed political appointees, military and paramilitary organisations as well as other security agencies as beneficiaries of the State House Medical Centre’s free services.

Arabi said: “Apart from the Presidency, other beneficiaries of the free services include political appointees, the military, paramilitary, other security agencies, members of the National Assembly and the general public.”

Arabi also noted that “Considering the unrestricted patronage base and free services of the State House Medical Centre, coupled with the funding hiccups and periodic receipts, it may not be far-fetched to notice gaps between demand and supply of medical equipment and consumables at certain stages of the budget circle.”

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