States received N1.385tr Paris Club refund in 2018, says minister
Minister of Finance, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, has said that last year, state governments received over N1.385 trillion as budget support to enable them carry out activities contained in the financial plans under the Paris Club debt over-deduction refund package of the Federal Government.
The sum, according to her, was paid in three tranches.
Ahmed disclosed this in Abuja yesterday at a one-day workshop organised by the office of the Accountant-General of the Federation on the process of revenue generation, accounting and reporting to the Federation Allocation and Accounts Committee (FAAC) for revenue generating agencies in the country and members of the FAAC committee, consisting of finance commissioners and states’ accountants-general.
The minister, represented by the newly-promoted Permanent Secretary and former Director of Special Duties in the ministry, Dr. Mohammed Dikwa, said: “Members will recall that as a result of Paris Club loans taken by Federal Government between 1992 and 1995, states owed Federal Government billions of naira that subsequent governments refused to pay. It is the administration of Buhari that took the bull by the horn and agreed to source for fund to pay the liabilities.
“This has been accomplished in three tranches of N492.505 billion, N243.795 billion and N649.434 billion respectively. This clearly demonstrated the love the President has for this country and the economic well-being of its citizenry. The injection of the colossus amount of money no doubt supported our exiting recession; put the country to path of growth and enabled states to meet their obligations.”
The minister then stressed the need for all revenue-generating agencies to abide by the rules of the new fiscal reporting regime aimed at ensuring transparency and accountability as a way of fostering confidence of the sub-nationals that they are not being short-changed by the Federal Government to avert sanctions.
The Accountant-General of the Federation, Alhaji Ahmed Idris, whose office developed the template, said the objective of the new revenue template was to raise revenue generation and the associated remittances into the Federation Account.