The DG of the National Youths Service Corps (NYSC), Brigadier-General Sulyman Kazaure, on Monday, said thousands of prospective corps members meant to commence service on Friday will miss the exercise, due to non-availability of funds.
Kazaure, while appearing before the Senate Committee on Youth and Sports, said the corps members earlier slated for mobilisation this week would remain in their homes due to paucity of funds.
He said the service had a shortfall of N13 billion in the 2016 budget, adding that the development had made it cash-strapped.
According to him, the prospective corps members, meant to be of ‘Batch A’ stream two, who were expected to hit the 37 orientation camps on Friday, could no longer be accommodated because of lack of funds.
He said as of Monday, the funds required could not be accessed from the Federal Government, adding that the corps had made spirited efforts through series of letters written in the past weeks.
He also said series of requests for release of funds for the impending mobilisation were forwarded to Ministry of Youth and Sports, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Budget and National Planning and the Presidency before the expiration of orientation camp for Batch A stream one, who were already out of camp.
“We are presently at a loss in NYSC now, as there is no money for us to mobilise thousands of prospective corps members in the Batch A stream 2 to camp this Friday as earlier planned, despite efforts made by us to get things done in that direction several weeks ago.
“The problem staring us in the face arose from the N13 billion shortfall we had in the 2016 budget estimates, upon which the agency made strong request for its provision during budget defence about three months ago,” he said.
The Director-General, however, expressed the hope that a last minute intervention could be made to ensure the release of the needed funds, as, according to him, the Chief of Staff to the President had invited the Minister of Youth and Sports, Solomon Dalung, to see him over the matter.
Chairman of the committee, Senator Obinna Ogba, equally expressed concern over the development.
He assured the NYSC boss that the Senate would intervene by setting up emergency meetings with the minister, the NYSC, as well as the ministries of Finance and Budget.