Over 60 percent of the 2017 capital projects would be rolled over to next year Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, has revealed,
The Minister made this disclosure when she appeared before the Senate Committee on Appropriation in Abuja on Tuesday to explain the implementation of the 2017 budget.
Adeosun, who appeared before the lawmakers alongside the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Mr Udoma Udo Udoma, noted that the refusal of the legislative arm of government to approve the executive’s borrowing plans for this year’s budget has made it impossible to implement most of the capital projects.
According to her, N310 billion had earlier been released to fund capital projects under the 2017 budget.
She said before the end of this week, Federal Government will release the N100 billion recently raised from the Sukuk, a non- interest diaspora bond, to the Ministry of Works, Power and Housing, for capital projects across the country.
“The N100 billion raised from the Sukuk, a non- interest diaspora bond would be released to the Ministry of Works to enable it carry out some infrastructural development of the country.
“We successfully raised a N100 billion bond to be released this week. At the end of this week, we would have released about N440.9 billion on capital budget for 2017,” the Minister told the lawmakers.
She lamented that most of the capital projects carried out this year were those rolled over from 2016.
She said it would be impossible for government to complete this year’s projects because of the N2.3 trillion deficits in the 2017 capital budget.
The Minister said the executive was working hard to return Nigeria’s budgeting system to January to December.
She said as a result of this, the executive would be required to submit next year’s budget to the National Assembly this month so as to meet up with the new system.
Mrs Adeosun appealed to the parliament to approve government’s borrowing plans so as to fast track development in the country.
“I would be throwing the question back to you, ‘when are you approving our borrowing plans’?” the Minister jokingly asked the lawmakers at the grilling yesterday.
She said government was focused on completing prioritized projects that were critical to the administration.
“We will keep the capital going to ensure that the projects are not disrupted from completion,” Mrs Adeosun said.
Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriations, Mr Danjuma Goje, said the Senate was worried at the slow pace of the implementation of the 2017 budget.