By Segun Adejumo
The Federal Government of Nigeria has disclosed that it has recovered about N78bn, $3m from various peopled that had looted the country’s treasury.
Nigeria’s Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed disclosed this on a News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) programme today in Abuja.
Mohammed said: “What we have recovered and if my record is right is about N78 billion, and 3 million dollars.”
He assured Nigerians that every penny recovered from the looters will be judiciously spent, adding that there will be no room for anybody to re-loot the fund again under the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.
But the recovered looted fund, according to the minister, could not revive the country’s dwindled economy.
He explained that the looted fund recovered so far by government is far from what the country needs to revive the economy.
The minister said: “We have been able to block various accounts in which about 9 billion dollar 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 per cent of the salaries in a month.’’
“Nigerians should understand that what had been recovered was so little compared to what the people needed on a continuous basis.”
Speaking on the implementation of the 2016 budget, Mohammed said the Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun has released a whopping N400 billion for capital projects, mostly on roads, railway, and power.
He said: “N400 billion seems a lot, but you must also understand that for three or four years contractors were not paid. 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.”
The minister disclosed that what the government owed the contractors was about N2 trillion.
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