The Nigerian National Assembly and the Oversight of Constituency Fund

Abstract

Given that legislature possess power to provide constituency services, an understanding of this function is instrumental in appraising constituency fund with respect to legislative oversight. While different nomenclatures of constituency fund exist across national cases (Pork Barrel in the United States, Constituency Development Fund in Zambia), a defining feature of its operation in Nigeria opens a vacuum to be filled to ensure probity in the management of the fund. Drawing on a desk review interviews from key respondents on the one hand, and data from BudgIT reports on federal constituency projects in Nigeria on the other hand, this study examines the framework for the operation of constituency fund and analyze the extent of utilization of constituency fund in Nigeria. The study explores the use of oversight tools for effective management of constituency fund. Findings from the study showed that the modalities involved in the operation of constituency fund in Nigeria permit corruption and embezzlement of fund to hold sway. Findings also suggest relevant oversight tools such as routine oversight, audit queries etc. capable of ensuring proper and actual implementation of constituency fund.

Keywords: Legislature, constituency fund, constituency project, national assembly, oversight

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 50-67 (Download PDF)

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