Nigerian govt sets up committee to probe ecological funds

Nigerian govt sets up committee to probe ecological funds
April 27 21:28 2017

The National Economic Council (NEC) on Thursday set up a committee to audit Ecologic Funds and approved the decentralisation of the natural and ecological funds between the states and local governments, Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra state, has said.

Obiano said this in Abuja while briefing State House correspondents after the NEC meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

He said: “At the 76th meeting of NEC held today, the following resolutions were arrived at. First on the natural resource funds at ecological fund, the Accountant-General of the federation briefed the council on the natural resource and ecological funds as follows:

“Natural resource funds balanced as at 31 March 2017 was N70.9 billion. Ecological balance ast that date was N33.6 billion. States and Local governments now keep their share of resource and ecological funds for use as the need arises in their respective jurisdictions.

“Council decided that an audit of ecological funds be carried. Adhoc committee comprising of Oyo, Borno, Imo, Kaduna, Anambra, Akwa Ibom, Benue and Ministers of Finance and Environments have been set up to do the audit and come up with recommendations on how all the funds shall be managed.”

On the Paris Club refunds, Obiano told journalists that the Minister of Finance gave the council an update on the disbursement of refunds and preparation for the next round of payments to states after the first disbursement.

He said governors expressed appreciation to the President for the previous disbursement of the funds.

Obiano said the minister also told the council that the balance in the Excess Crude Account as at April 26, 2017 stands at 2.2 billion USD.

Also speaking, Governor Simong Bako Lalong of Plateau state said the Vice President updated council on the progress of four of the Social Investment Plan of the administration namely the N-Power, Conditional Cash Transfer, Home Grown School Feeding Programme and the Economic and Empowerment Programme for Micro Credit.

He said the council was also briefed on some impediments and programme implementation delays noticed in the federal government or state government collaboration and resolve to end such obstacles.

He also dismissed remarks that the Paris Club refunds was a favour done to the state governments, saying that the funds were monies that belong to the states which was illegally taken.