Gift Joseph Okpakorese
Zainab Ahmed has disclosed what transpired between the state Governors, the FG, and the CBN with regards to the financial crisis experienced during March shortfalls.
The Finance Minister revealed that the Federal Government had turned down a proposal by state Governors to obtain finances from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to enhance the N50 billion federation account allocation committee (FAAC) shortfall in March.
Reacting to the request by the state governors, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, disclosed that the FG refused the request outrightly. The minister made these remarks while appearing as a guest on the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA), program, ‘Good Morning Nigeria’ a daily breakfast show, on Monday, April 20th, 2021.
Recall that the governor of Edo State, His Excellency, Godwin Obaseki, had earlier insinuated that the federal government printed the sum of N60 billion to finance March federal allocation to states.
However, the Administrative leader of CBN, Godwin Emefiele, came out to debunk the claims made by the Edo state governor, and criticized him for making such misleading comments, describing them as “unfortunate and inappropriate.”
Explaining the situation further, Ahmed stated that whenever there is a reduction in federal allocation, the FG borrows money from some reserve accounts. She however revealed that although the allocation for March fell by a whopping sum of N50 billion, it was decided by the federal government that every state government should prudently manage their resources and finances.
According to the Finance Minister;
“It is a difficult time, I can explain to you how difficult it is, not just for the federal government but also the states, we see an increasing reduction in our FAAC revenue”
“In March, we had a shortfall of FAAC that is almost about N50 billion and we did not have enough accrued in any of those accounts, the states to be honest wanted us to borrow from the Central Bank, but we resisted, we just told everybody to go back to live within what they had.”
“So it was very surprising for us when we heard a sitting governor saying that CBN has printed money for FAAC, that was very unfortunate because it is not true.”