Daily Trust (Abuja)

4 December 2012

Nigeria: N300 Billion Fourth Quarter Release - N170 Billion Cash Backed, Says Okonjo-Iweala

The Minister of Finance Dr. Okonjo-Iweala said yesterday in Abuja that out of the N300 billion capital budget released for the fourth quarter last month, N170 billion was cash-backed.

She said during a media briefing that out of the N170 billion, about N110 billion went into the account of MDAs and the balance of about N59 billion is going into AIE (Authorisation to Incur Expenditure).

She said: "It was said that we have not cash-backed the last quarter. This is not correct. We have cash-backed N170 billion of the fourth quarter release. That is the correct information. About N110 billion of that has gone straight into the account of MDAs and the balance of about N59 billion is going in through AIE (Authorisation to Incur Expenditure).

"Those entities actually have to apply specifically to us to effect the release of their resources. In summary, N170 billion has been cash-backed and it is very much polite to correct that. As at the end of October, of the amount that has been cash-backed from the last three quarters, 71 percent has been utilized, leaving about 20 percent not utilized. We believe that by the end of November, this would have been fully utilized by the MDAs."

She said that government has been careful to make sure that about N44 billion of this goes to ministry of works because they have been charged to make sure that certain key roads are ready and motorable for Christmas.

"If you verify with them I am sure they would tell you that they have received this money. I just want to correct this impression that the release has not been cash-backed," she said.

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