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FG Spent N1.1tr to Service Debt in 9 Months

By Dipo Olowookere

A report by Daily Trust has disclosed that the Federal Government used about N1.094 trillion on debt servicing between January and September 2016.

The newspaper said it relied on a document it sighted yesterday by its reporter for this claim.

According to the paper, the document revealed that N1.044 trillion was spent on local debt servicing as against the N980.55 billion appropriated, representing N63.45 billion extra-budgetary expenditure.

The document also revealed that the government spent N50.22 billion on foreign debt servicing as against the N40.86 billion budgeted.

The Debt Management Office (DMO) had put the government’s domestic debt stock at N10.845 trillion as of September 30, 2016; and foreign debt stock, $11.583 billion.

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The Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, yesterday presented the 2016 budget implementation and performance monitoring report for the third quarter at the State House in Abuja.

She explained that the increase in the external debt stock in the third quarter of 2016 was due largely to the rise in Non-Paris Club Bilateral Debts draw-down.

Ahmed also revealed that N85.17 billion was withdrawn from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) for distribution amongst the three tiers of government within the quarter, leaving a balance of $2.89 bn balance as of September 20.

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She said no transfers were made to the ECA in the first two quarters of last year sequel to the decline in the global oil price and supply constraints, adding that N145.48bn was transferred to the account in the third quarter owing to price recovery.

A breakdown of the actual statutory transfers in the third quarter shows that N19.28bn was released to the Universal Basic Education; the Niger Delta Development Commission, N10.26bn; N17.50bn to the National Judicial Council; N11.25bn to the Independent National

Electoral Commission; N28.75bn to the National Assembly; N0.50bn to the Public Complaint Commission; N0.30bn to the Human Rights Commission.

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The minister also stated that as of October 19, 2016, a total of N753.663bn capital releases, out of the appropriated N1.587trn, was released for priority projects and programmes identified as contributing to the Strategic Implementation of the budget.

She said a review of the utilisation performance as of October 19, 2016 showed that out of the N1.58 trn total capital budgetary allocation, N753.663bn, representing 47.5 percent, had been released and cash-backed with N403.4bn so far utilised by 30 out of 46 ministries, departments and agencies.

Daily Trust.

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Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan.

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