FG Printed N60bn, Obaseki Insists

Federal Ministry of Finance

The Governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki has faulted the Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, for denying that the Federal Government printed N60 billion in March to support allocation to states.

While insisting that N60 billion was printed, the governor accused the Federal Government of “monetary rascality’ and tackled the finance minister for “playing the Ostrich”.

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Reacting to the denial by Zainab hat his claim on FG’s printing of N60bn was “untrue”, Obaseki said, “While we do not want to join issues with the Federal Ministry of Finance, we believe it is our duty to offer useful advice for the benefit of our country.

“The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, should rally Nigerians to stem the obvious fiscal slide facing our country.

“Rather than play the Ostrich, we urge the government to take urgent steps to end the current monetary rascality, so as to prevent the prevailing economic challenge from degenerating further.

“We believe it is imperative to approach the Nigerian project with all sense of responsibility and commitment and not play to the gallery because ultimately, time shall be the judge of us all.”

Obaseki was last week quoted as saying, “When we got FAAC for March, the Federal Government printed additional N50-N60 billion to top-up for us to share.

“This April, we will go to Abuja and share. By the end of this year, our total borrowings are going to be within N15-N16 trillion,” Obaseki had lamented over the weekend.

While responding to questions from State House correspondents on Wednesday, the Finance Minister said Obaseki’s claim was not factual.

Ahmed said, “The issue that was raised by the Edo State Governor, for me, is very sad because it is not a fact. What we distribute at FAAC is revenue that is generated and in fact, distribution revenue is a piece of public information.

“We publish revenue generated by FIRS, the Customs, and the NNPC and we distribute at FAAC.”