The Aso Villa clinic, officially known as State House Medical Centre, received only N1, 195,257,022.13 out of the budgeted N3, 365,000,000 since 2015.
The Permanent Secretary of the state House, Jalal Arabi, stated this in a statement issued yesterday adding that this could be verified from the Ministries of Finance and Budget and National Planning.
“The attention of the presidency has been drawn to recent media reports suggesting that the State House Medical Centre had received N11.01billion as appropriation for the period 2015-2017,” read the statement signed by the Deputy Director of Information, at the state house, Attah Esa.
“According to the Permanent Secretary, State House, Jalal A. Arabi, contrary to the above claims, out of the total capital appropriation of N2.9 billion and recurrent appropriation of N465 million for the period under reference, only the sum of N969 million (representing 32.97 per cent) for capital and N225 million (representing 48.41 per cent) for recurrent was actually released.
“It may interest the public to know that there was zero capital allocation for the medical centre in 2017, while out of the N331 million being the recurrent appropriation for 2017, the actual amount released up to September was N91 million (representing only 27.54 per cent).
The statement said despite the shortfalls between budgetary provisions and actual releases, the medical centre provided free services to the “over 10,000 registered patients” annually.
“In addition, the centre has continued to execute on-going projects,” the statement read.
“Apart from the presidency, other beneficiaries of the free services include political appointees, the military, para-military, other security agencies, members of the national assembly, and the general public,” it read.
“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.”
The medical centre has been in the news since Zahra, one of the daughters of President Muhammadu Buhari, took to social media to complain about the state of the facility.
One week after her public criticism, the president’s wife called for a probe of the allocations to the clinic.
In August, TheCable did a report on the embarrassing situation at the hospital.
The house of representatives has set up a committee to probe the clinic.