LAI Mohammed, the minister of information, has revealed that the amount recovered by the Muhammadu Buhari administration cannot rescue Nigeria’s economy as it is a far cry from what the country needs to revive the economy.
Mohammed, who said this on Friday, September 1, when he appeared on a News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, Forum in Abuja, added that the amount of money recovered is always being made public. He said: “What we have recovered and if my record is right is about N78 billion, and $3 million.
“We have been able to block various accounts in which about nine billion dollars is found but those are not money available to us because we are still in court over them.
“The government spends N165 billion every month to pay federal civil servants, even what has been so far recovered will not even pay 50 percent of the salaries in a month.’’ Mohammed gave assurance that every cent recovered will be sensibly spent and nobody could re-loot what had been returned under the incumbent government. He further clarified that Nigerians should understand that what had been recovered was so little in comparison with what the people needed on a regular basis.
“N400 billion seems a lot, but you must also understand that for three or four years contractors were not paid,” he added. “So, when we paid this money to contractors, they also use part of it to settle their own debt, they use part of it to recall laid off staff. “But the truth of the matter is that many of them have been paid, they are yet to mobilise to site and they cannot do so until the rains are over.”
Nigeria has recently announced its first recession since 1991, according to Central Bank data. The country has been slammed by low oil prices, attacks by Niger Delta militants and foreign currency shortages. The National Bureau of Statistics fresh report put estimated oil production at 1.69 million barrels per day, down by 0.42 million barrels per day from the first quarter.
— Sep 12, 2016 @ 01:00 GMT