Buhari presents 2017 budget, says FG spent N3.58trn in 2016

By Wahab Akanji, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari presented the 2017 budget estimates before the National Assembly, saying his government has implemented about N3. 58 trillion out of the N6.08 trillion budgeted for 2016.
According to Buhari on Wednesday during the formal presentation of a N7.28 trillion budget for 2017 to the joint session of the National Assembly for approval, the budget, tagged “Budget of Recovery and Growth”, was higher than the 2016 estimates by about 19.95 per cent.
Buhari said that the implementation of the 2016 budget was hampered by the low oil prices in the first quarter of 2016, and disruptions in crude oil production which led to significant shortfalls in projected revenue.
He said this also negatively affected revenue collection by the Federal Inland Revenue Service and the Nigerian Customs Service.
“As at Sept. 30, 2016, aggregate revenue inflow was N2.17 trillion or 25 per cent less than prorated projections. Similarly, N3.58 trillion had been spent by the same date on both recurrent and capital expenditure.
“This is equivalent to 79 per cent of the prorated full year expenditure estimate of N4.54 trillion as at the end of Sept. 2016. In spite of these challenges, we met both our debt service obligations and personnel costs. Similarly, overhead costs have been largely covered,’’ he said.
Buhari said that in spite of revenue shortfalls, the amount of N753.6 billion had so far been released for capital expenditure as at the end of Oct. 2016.
“Although capital expenditure suffered as a result of project formulation delays and revenue shortfalls, it is important to note that this is the highest capital releases recorded in the nation’s recent history. In fact, it exceeds the aggregate capital expenditure budget for 2015,’’ he said.
Buhari said that from the 2016 budget, construction of new terminals at the country’s four major airports, numerous road projects, power transmission projects and completion of the Kaduna – Abuja railway project was still ongoing.

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