States to begin repayment of budget support facility July – Finance minister

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and state governors on Thursday agreed to start deductions on the budget support facility this month.

The Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, disclosed this to journalists at the end of the National Executive Council (NEC) meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The meeting was attended by state governors, ministers, the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, and other senior government officials.

The repayment of the budget support facility had caused a rift between the governors and the apex bank.

Emefiele had in May asked states to start repayment of the funds, but the governors insisted on postponement.

The Federal Government extended the conditional facility to states through the CBN in 2017 to help cushion the impact of dwindling resources and help meet their various obligations.

At the expiration of the two-year grace period, the deductions were suspended for one year to enable states to stabilise their finances following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.

Ahmed told journalists deductions from state governments would now commence from this month with the agreement reached on the matter.

She also revealed that the country’s Excess Crude Account (ECA) stood at $60.85 million while the stabilisation account and development of natural resources account have N26.35 billion and N23.57 billion respectively as of July 13.

The minister noted that the federal government is working out modalities on the provision of mass transit buses in major cities nationwide.

 

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