In a move that will clear the backlog of un-accessed funds in its coffers, the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), has said it would soon disburse N142.6 billion to states for the development of basic education.
Speaking at a media parley in Abuja, the Executive Secretary of UBEC, Dr. Hamid Bobboyyi, said the funds which were left un-accessed by some states, would be disbursed within two to five months.
Bobboyi noted that N71.3 billion, representing 50 per cent of the money was the actual allocation made by UBEC to the states while N71.3 billion was the counterpart fund states were expected to pay in.
He said some states especially in the South East failed to pay in their matching grants to access the funds since 2015, adding that the Federal Government will deduct at source the Paris Club Refund accruable to the states in order to pay the counterpart funds.
“By the next three, four months or at most five months, we will have no un-accessed funds in UBEC. Why am I making the promise? The Federal Government found it inappropriate and discussed it with the states and deducted from the Paris Club refund the entire amount owed by the states up to 31 of August 2017.
“The Federal Government will credit the account of UBEC with about N71.3 billion, which is the amount that is there. We are going to add the marching grant and so in the next few months, the states are going to get 142.6 billion,” he said.
While disclosing that the commission has successfully conducted head count of teachers and pupils in primary and secondary schools across the country, he said the result of the personnel audit will be formally announced by 28 February 2019.
Earlier, the Director of Social Mobilisation, Malam Bello Kagara, said the conflicting figures of out-of-school children would soon be “redefined” due to the activities of UBEC, adding the results of the census were currently being analyzed.
Kagara said in a bid to ensure that the commission tackles the menace of out-of-school children, it was engaging with members of the e-9 countries to provide a peer review for managing the population.
In his remarks, the Director in charge of Academic Service in UBEC, Mr Wadata Madawaki, said the commission was in the process of procuring textbooks and other learning materials for basic schools across the country.
Madawaki stated that 7.3 million textbooks were procured for primary 4-6 and distributed under the 2015/2016 intervention by the Commission, adding that N165 million was also allocated to each state and FCT for the Teachers Professional Development programme in 2018.