The Federal Government’s allocation to states may rise to N700 billion by next month if current efforts at blocking leakages and fighting corruption continue.
Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on political matters, Senator Babafemi Ojudu said this in Ibadan. He said government’s efforts so far raised this month’s allocation to N500 billion, the highest in three years.
“Aside working hard to ensure that the country develops agriculture, support job creation for youths and support the very poor with huge funds so they can rise above acute poverty, the president has also chosen to fight corruption that has brought the country down. That is also fighting back in a way. Nigeria is losing about 1.5 million barrels of oil per day due to sabotage including activities of the Niger Delta Avengers. It is a big problem. But we are striving hard to make Nigeria better.
“We are also blocking leakages. Through this effort, N500 billion was shared by the state government last month. And this will continue. In fact, we are working hard to raise it to N700 billion this month so they can pay salaries. I just appeal to our governors to spend this money on what people can see. Let them not tamper with this money. If we can do this in a long time, we will have a different story.”
He also disclosed that the Presidency was investigating claims of marginalization of the south in President Buhari’s appointments.
He explained that Buhari was taking the allegation seriously but pointed out that the compilation has since shown that no section of the country was being marginalized in the appointments made so far by Buhari.
According to him, some northerners who were appointed as heads of federal government agencies were chosen by merit, adding that Buhari was determined to return the country to the path of meritocracy.
He also slammed the opposition for sponsoring such claims. accusing them of being responsible for the current crisis.
He said: “Sometimes, we allow the opposition to provide us our narratives. In the last few weeks, what we have done in the Presidency is to compile data of appointments for MDAs. What has been shown so far is that what people are saying around is not the truth. That is not to say that people are not deserving of whatever they can get, anybody from any part of the country deserves what they clamour for. But I want to say that claims of marginalization is a wrong narrative about this government. They are trying to destroy the country.
“But there are Nigerian who are determined to frustrate government simply because they have stolen the resources of this country. $15 billion was voted to fight insurgency and some people shared it. We are pursuing them to return the money and they are complaining.”