Leadership (Abuja)

Nigeria: FAAC - FG Strategises With States On Boosting IGRS

As the persistent shortfall in revenue continue s to cut deep into the nation's resources, the federal government has begun strategising with state governments on how to boost internally generated revenue (IGR).

Addressing journalists shortly after the Federal Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) meeting, on Thursday, Minister of State for Finance, Dr Yerima Lawan Ngama said the issue of IGR for the states was discussed extensively, adding that strategies had been agreed on to boost states' IGR.

He said, "We have discussed so many issues and we have decided to work towards increasing our IGR at the state level.

"The states have to sit up in generating more revenue. We have noted the states that are doing well and the ones not doing well.

"We have decided to discuss the strategies so that those doing well will help those that are not doing well."

Meanwhile, the committee Thursday night allocated the sum of N675.65bn to the three tiers of government.

The allocation, which is for the month of November was N107.23bn higher than the N568.4bn shared in the preceding month of October.

In a communique issued shortly after the committee's meeting and signed by the Accountant General of the Federation, Mr Jonah Otunla, the committee said that the sum of N632.48bn was distributed under two main sub heads.

They are statutory allocation of N540.75bn and Value Added Tax of N91.73bn.

For the statutory allocation, it said that after deducting cost of collections due to the Nigerian Custom Service (N2.96bn) and the Federal Inland Revenue Service (N2.58bn), the balance of N535.20bn was shared based on the allocation formula.

Of this amount, the federal government received N252.23bn representing 52.68 per cent; states N127.93bn or 26.72 per cent while the 774 local governments area was allocated N98.63bn or 20.6 per cent.

The balance of N56.39bn was allocated to the oil producing states based on the 13 per cent principle of derivation.

For the VAT allocation, the federal government after deducting cost of collection of N3.66bn, received N13.2bn or 15 per cent, states N44.03bn or 50 per cent while the local government was allocated N30.82bn or 35 per cent.

Similarly, the sum of N35.54bn was shared under the Subsidy reinvestment and empowerment program while N7.617bn was for the refund of the debt which the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation owed the federation account

The communique stated that the sum of N56.998bn was transferred to the Excess Crude, Petroleum Profit Tax and Royalty Account.

On revenue performance,it said that "the gross revenue of N597.75bn received for the month (November) was higher than the N539.55bn received in the previous month by N58.199bn."

There was, however, a mild drama before the meeting was convened owing to fears that enough money was not remitted by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation to the federation account.

The commissioners of finance from the 36 states had besieged the headquarters of the ministry of finance as early as 8am on Thursday to meet with the Minister of State for Finance, Dr Yerima Ngama over the position of the federation account.

It was learnt that the recent revelation by the CBN governor about the unremitted $49bn had raised fears that this Month's allocation meeting would not hold as planned.

But after much deliberations, the meeting was eventually convened at night where the report for this month's sharing was considered and approved.

On why the commissioners besieged the ministry in the early hours of Thursday, he said, "We are supposed to have the FAAC tomorrow and not today, but we decided to do it today because of Christmas and we did this to make everybody get their salaries before Christmas and this was why we had a joint sitting."

Ngama, however, kept mum when asked to comment on the unremitted $49bn by the NNPC.

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