2016 Budget: Capital Releases to MDAs reach the N1trillion mark

Capital releases to Federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs)   for the 2016 budget, have reached a record N1 trillion, the highest ever budgetary releases in Nigeria’s annual funding for capital projects, Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun has revealed.

“So far, N1 trillion has been released on capital and this is the highest so far in the history of this country. With the current stability in oil    price and the return of normalcy in Niger Delta, I am sure we will do   more this year   (2017),” she said.

The Minister disclosed the figure in an interactive exchange with members of the House of Representatives Tactical Committee on  Recession in her office in Abuja.

The amount was released for various projects including the commencement of the construction of a dual standard railway line that would link Lagos and Kano, rehabilitation of roads, expanding irrigation facilities to boost agriculture and the upgrading of aviation infrastructure throughout the country.

She said that the components of the releases include aggregate releases to the MDAs of N870, 055, 792, 283.00 billion as at the end of February 2017 and additional  releases of N65, 393, 920, 000 . Others were Manual Authority to Incur Expenditure (AIEs) in  February 2017 in the sum of N11, 179, 173, 711.42 and an additional Manual AIEs worth N45, 804, 709, 077.20 as at March 13, 2017.  Mrs. Adeosun noted that the overall capital releases totalling N992, 433, 595, 071.42 have made impact on the Nigerian   economy, by creating jobs, stimulating economic activities in communities and upgrading infrastructure, thereby improving the wellbeing of Nigerians.

The Minister pointed out that contractors returning to project sites around the country have employed workers, contributed to economic growth and improved the wellbeing of Nigerians in line with the strategic objectives of the administration of President Muhammadu  Buhari.

The Minister emphasised: “We are determined to transform the economy and this is why we are focused on capital expenditure. If we have our rail, road and power, then we will be able to generate    jobs and prosperity.”

It could be recalled that in the Federal Government's drive to devote more resources to capital projects, especially the upgrading of the country's infrastructure, the Federal Executive Council at its meeting  on March 22, 2017 approved the reconstruction of 12 more major highways  across the country at the contract sum of N80 billion.