I’M NOT WITHHOLDING POWER SECTOR FUNDS —Okonjo-Iweala •Says Reps’ accusation baseless •Min. pays N8.27b for GENCOs & DISCOs, N72.7b for other projects

Posted by News Express | 10 July 2013 | 4,438 times

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The Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has denied the claim by the Chairman of the House Committee on Power, Mr. Patrick Ikhariale, that she failed to release funds meant for the power sector.

“The statement, if it was truly made, is not only completely wrong but tends to personalise an important national issue. It also betrays a limited understanding of the current status of power sector financing which the administration of President Jonathan has made a key priority in the implementation of the Power Roadmap,” said Okonjo-Iweala’s Special Adviser, Paul C Nwabuikwu.

According to Nwabuikwu in a statement released this evening in Abuja, the Nigerian capital, “N8.27 billion was specifically released last week to the Federal Ministry of Power for the distribution companies (DISCOs) and generating companies (GENCOs) following approval by President Goodluck Jonathan.

“Also, as stated in a news release issued by the Ministry on May 23, the Federal Ministry of Finance has paid a total of N72.7 billion to the Federal Ministry of Power so far this year to cover various items in line with the implementation of the Power Roadmap.

The amount includes the sum of N45 billion paid to PHCN workers as part of the power privatisation programme.

“It also includes monies released under the Multi Year Tariff Order (MYTO).

“Other beneficiaries include the Power Ministry headquarters, Power Holding Company of Nigeria, National Rural Electrification Agency, National Electricity Regulatory Commission, National Power Training Institute, National Electricity Liability Management Limited/GTE (NELMCO) and Bulk Trader.

“A breakdown of the figures shows that N59,089,522,721 billion was paid in the first quarter while N13,733,822,832 has been paid so far in the second quarter.

“Against this background, the notion that the Coordinating Minister is personally responsible for current power supply challenges facing the country is absolutely wrong and cannot be justified by the facts.” 

Photo shows Okonjo-Iweala.

Source: News Express

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