By Harry Awurumibe, State House , Abuja.
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Hajia Zainab Ahmed has revealed that her ministry has in keeping to the directive of the President of Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari released the huge sum of N650 billion for the Capital Expenditure in the year 2019.
The minister who was answering questions on why funds are not made available for the fixing of the Nigerian roads from the State House Correspondents after the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osibanjo, said that huge sums of money are always allocated to ministries of Works and Housing as well as Transport.
She said, “It gives me an opportunity to state that the Minister of Works and Housing has a proposed budget of N247 billion for the year 2020 and the greatest component of this budget is the fixing of Nigerian roads. It is true that we are not able to fund the budget 100% but whenever we release funds for capital projects, the Ministry of Power, the Ministry of Works and Housing is always the priority and also the Ministry of Transport’.
“Our fiscal space is tight, resources are limited because revenues are on the performing but at time we have resources, funds to release, the highest proportion goes to Power, Transport, World and Housing. And also we have introduced some measures that have seen private sector participants getting involved in road construction. One of these measures is the Road Infrastructure Task Credit Scheme that Mr President approved by Executive Order early this year so far we have 17 companies that are carrying out 19 roads across the six geo-political zones”.
“I also want to remind you that for the past two years, we have issued Sukuku bonds. In 2017,it was for the construction of 25 roads. In 2018, 23 roads and there is also another one that is being”.