Fidelity bank card banner Emerald Energy Institute Camano banner

Okonjo-Iweala punctures Senators’ false claims on 2014 Budget •Provides facts & figures

By News Express on 06/02/2014

Gmail icon

Views: 2,959


High recurrent expenditure historical, compounded by pensions
Borrowing going down; new loans concessional
FG leveraging additional funding for housing, agric, rail and power

The Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has roundly refuted several personalised allegations against her by some Senators during the recent Senate budget debate. Whilst thanking the majority of the Senate who understand the issues at stake, she stated that a few made allegations and accusations not based on fact.

“Though government is continuous and the Minister has no desire to shirk her responsibilities, the effort to personalise these issues on the basis of inaccurate information is unfortunate and must be roundly refuted,” Okonjo-Iweala’s Special Adviser, Paul C Nwabuikwu, said in a statement issued this afternoon in Abuja.

Continuing, he said: “The first point made by some Senators is that she is responsible for the rising recurrent expenditure, which according to them rose “from 69 percent in the 2013 budget to 76 percent in the 2014”. This is inaccurate, and at this stage, it is important to recount the recent trend of the government’s recurrent expenditure.

“The fact is that during 2010, thegovernment awarded salary increases of 53% across the board to the public service, which increased the wage bill from N856.9 billion in 2009 to N1.36 trillion in 2010. At the time, finances were inadequate to back this award, and the government had to increase domestic borrowing significantly to cover the shortfall. This rise in government domestic borrowing, from N524 billion in 2009 to N1.36 trillion in 2010, is also the singular cause of the country’s rising domestic debt profile, from 14.83% of our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2009 to 17.98% of GDP in 2010.The rise in salaries is also reflected by the sharp increase in the recurrent expenditure to 74.4% in 2011.

“The Honourable Minister of Finance – Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala was not in government when these events took place.Please note that President Goodluck Jonathan has focused on reversing this trend. Since 2011, various measures have been introduced, leading to a steady decline in recurrent expenditure from 74.4% in 2011, to 71.47% in 2012, and then to 67.5% in 2013.

“However, it is important to note that under the proposed 2014 budget, the recurrent expenditure will rise to 74%, for two reasons:

“A decline in the Budget base: Total expenditure of N4.64 trillion in the proposed 2014 is about a7% decline from the 2013 budget level of N4.98 trillion. From a mathematical standpoint, this reduction in the budget base will result in a slight increase in the weight of the recurrent expenditure in the budget, which in absolute terms, has increased from 2013 levels.

“Payment of Pensions: It is also important to note that the country is yet to fully absorb pension’s implications of the 2010 wage increases. Starting in 2013 budget, this Administrationcommenced tackling the payment of outstanding military pensions, and Budget 2014 will further address civilian pensions. We have been under pressure from many quarters, including Senators, to integrate the civilian component of pension, and doing so will further increase the recurrent budget. Will the Senators blame Okonjo-Iweala for this?

“Secondly, on the issue of excessive borrowing, it is noteworthy to mention that theflow of domestic borrowinghas actually reduced, from N852 billion in 2011 to N588 billion in 2013, as shown in Figure 2, a borrowing of N572 billion proposed in the 2014 budget. Furthermore, for the first time in the history of our domestic debt, the Finance Minister ensured the repayment of N75 billion of our domestic bonds. She further set up a sinking fund of N25 billion per annum to support the retirement of maturing bonds as above, rather than roll them over. This is directly contrary to the allegation that she is responsible for excessive borrowing within the economy. To also help the country lower the cost of debt service, DMO has made a minor switch in debt strategy to external borrowing (from multilateral finance organisations like the African Development Bank, China EXIM Bank, and the World Bank) at zero or very concessionary interest rates

“While it is important for us to debate the budget, it is also behoves us not to misinform Nigerians, demonise individuals based on false information and mischaracterise the nature of budget development in the country. A large number of lies are being told against the budget by those who do not care about the impact of their falsehood on the economy and the image of the country.  

“While acknowledging that the budget has some imperfections which we are working hard to fix, the large number of positives in terms of policies and resources must not be forgotten. A few examples, as laid out in the Minister’s budget speech:

“1. In addition to the N18.5 billion budgeted for the housing sector, Budget 2014 will leverage over N100 billion for a new mortgage refinance company that will create millions of jobs and provide affordable homes for millions of Nigerians.

“2. The budget will leverage considerable resources from internal and external sources to support the agricultural sector

3. The budget will support the ongoing massive repairs and reinvigoration of infrastructure in roads, rail, power and aviation.

“This is the truth that no amount of contrived allegations can conceal.”

•Photo shows Okonjo-Iweala.

Source News Express

Posted 07/02/2014 12:01:54 AM

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

 

You may also like...
I remain Speaker of Ekiti Assembly despite impeachment:...

Nigeria to begin exportation of yam to Europe,...

Unions demand removal of VC over mismanagement of...

Rivers APC set to receive 10,000 PDP defectors...

Senate moves to amend Police Act

The weak link in the war against Boko...

4,723 Nigerian slaves in Italy, Russia, Spain

Umahi’s surprising U-turn on Peter Obi, by Charles...

2019: INEC issues Sept 15 deadline for party...

Hoodlums set Ebonyi House of Assembly on fire...

I know where abducted Chibok schoolgirls are being...

Court adjourns ruling in Coca-Cola's suit challenging prosecution...

 

Latest News How IGP Mohammed Adamu hijacked recruitment of Police Constables — PSC Commissioner Presidential poll: Tribunal verdict can’t stand — PDP governors •Urges Supreme Court to do the right thing Why we’ll not congratulate Buhari on tribunal victory: Ohanaeze Ndigbo Drunken policeman stabs nine in club Presidential Poll: Buhari told a lie of a fundamental nature — PDP Campaign Spokesman Buhari vs Atiku: A different and broader perspective to the PEPT judgement $9.6bn judgment: Why we’re negotiating with P&ID — FG 2021: PDP vows to take over Anambra Okowa mourns Joe Utomi, declares him ‘a perfect gentleman-politician who distinguished himself in the service of his people’ Fidelity Bank donates laboratory to correctional home •Commended by Lagos Govt. for CSR projects Neither amalgamation nor colonisation is our problem, By Chukwudi Ohiri Bishop Kukah to speak on security, economy at GOCOP annual conference

 

Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (540,181 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (442,803 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (389,074 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (326,531 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (294,489 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (253,567 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (249,609 views) 10 cars more expensive than Jets (238,217 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (231,364 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (217,356 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (195,748 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (193,362 views)

 

CBN milk production

CBN banner advert

UBA Wise Savers Promo

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (102) Business & Economy (4,443) Business Verdict (80) Columnists (1,109) Complaints & Requests (96) Enterprise & Opportunities (215) Entertainment (664) Features (811) Global Business Monitor (442) ICT Monitor (63) International (3,952) Interview (203) Live Commentary (30) Love Matters (170) Maggie's Blog (410) News (51,343) Opinion (1,358) Pidgin (17) Politics (11,444) Religion (1,102) Sports (2,166) Stock Watch (39) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

 

 

 

 

 

APO Group Partner

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera