Governors elected on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress Congress (APC) have dispelled the claim that the federal government printed between N50 billion and N60 billion to bridge the shortfall in the distribution of federation revenues to the three tiers of government in March 2021.
Speaking at the Edo state transition committee stakeholders engagement, at the weekend, Edo state governor, Godwin Obaseki of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) said, “When we got FAAC for March, the federal government printed additional N50-N60 billion to top-up for us to share.”
But in a statement, Kebbi state governor and chairman of the Progressives Governors Forum (PGF), Atiku Bagudu said Obaseki’s claim did not reflect the true position of things.
“Given the significance of the statement from a sitting governor and the possible negative impact it has brought to the credibility of both the federal and state governments in managing government finances, the Forum is obliged to put a statement out.
“To set the records clear and to the best of our knowledge, the total distributable statutory revenue for the month of March 2021 was N596.94 billion.
“Due to the shortfall in gross statutory revenues by N43.34 billion compared to the previous month, an augmentation was made in the sum of N8.65 billion from the Forex Equalization Fund Account, which brought the total distributable revenue to N605.59 billion.
“Federation revenues distributed monthly primarily consist of mineral revenues from the sale of oil and gas, as well as non-mineral revenues from customs and excise duties, company income tax, and value added tax.
“The Progressive Governors admits that there are periods when the country experiences significant fiscal shocks in federation revenues, but says the shocks are offset by other savings serviced from the federation account, including distributions from the domestic excess crude proceeds and the foreign excess crude savings account.
“These payments started since 2008 when the country first experienced fiscal shocks from the fallouts of the global financial crisis of 2008 – 2009. As a trained Economist who has been a governor since 2016, Mr. Obaseki is aware of all the support states have received from President Buhari in coping with the shocks that have resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic recession,” the governors said.