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Obaseki reveals how FG printed N60bn for three tiers of government in March

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In what he described as ‘huge financial trouble’ for the nation, Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki said the consequence of mismanagement of the nation’s economy is now dawn on everyone.

Obaseki said the Federal government resorted to the printing of N60 billion for it to meet up with FAAC distribution to the three tiers of government in the month of March, 2021.

He lamented that it is only in Nigeria that staff of the Federal, States and Local Governments takes salaries at the end of the month.

While speaking at the transition committee stakeholders’ engagement, the governor said the economy was no longer what it used to be, with a rising debt profile and dependence on crude oil that was no longer sustainable.

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“Nigeria has changed. The economy of Nigeria is not the same again whether we like it or not. Since the civil war, we have been managing, saying money is not our problem as long as we are pumping crude oil every day. So, we have run a very strange economy and strange presidential system where the local, state and federal government, at the end of the month, go and earn salaries. We are the only country in the world that does that.

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“Everywhere else, the government relies on the people to produce taxes and that is what they use to run the local government, state and the federation. But with the way we run Nigeria, the country can go to sleep. At the end of the month, we just go to Abuja, collect money and we come back to spend. We are in trouble, huge financial trouble,” TheCable quoted him as saying on Thursday.

Obaseki, who described the current price of crude oil as only a mirage, lamented that the country had continued to borrow despite unclear means of repayment.

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He added, “The major oil companies who are the ones producing are no longer investing much in oil. Shell is pulling out of Nigeria and Chevron is now one of the world’s largest investors in alternative fuel, so in another year or so, where will we find this money that we go to share in Abuja?

“When we got FAAC for March, the Federal Government printed an additional N50-N60bn to top-up for us to share. This April, we will go to Abuja and share. By the end of this year, our total borrowing is going to be within N15trn to N16trn.’’

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