President Muhammadu Buhari has revealed what he would do with the staggering trillions of naira recovered from treasury looters. Buhari revealed that he wants to use the money in funding the part of the 2017 budget deficit of N2.69tn.
This was contained in the Medium Term Expenditure Framework/Fiscal Strategy Paper, which was submitted to the National Assembly.
The Senate had two weeks ago dismissed the 2017-2019 MTEF/FSP sent to it by President Muhammadu Buhari, describing the documents as “empty” and as such should not be considered.
In the document, the Federal Government is proposing to spend the sum of N6.86tn in 2017, with total revenue of N4.16tn. The deficit of N2.69tn, Buhari said will be funded by money recovered from looted funds, the rest would be from borrowings.
It read in part, “Based on the revenue and expenditure estimates, the fiscal deficit is estimated to increase by about N492bn or 22.32 per cent from the estimate of N2.2tn in 2016.
“However, while this remains below the maximum three per cent of the Gross Domestic Product stipulated in the Fiscal Responsibility Act, 2007, it is projected to take a downward turn afterwards.
“The deficit is to be financed mainly by borrowing as well as recoveries of misappropriated public funds/assets.”
The document further added: “Borrowing will be geared towards funding critical capital projects that have potential to effectively increase productivity, and hence, provide mechanism for refinancing the debt,” it added.
The Federal Government had in June this year released the list of recovered loot.
The Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, had in a statement said that the recoveries were made between May 29, 2015 and May 25, 2016.
The government gave the breakdown of the recovered loot as N78,325,354,631.82; $185,119,584.61; £3,508,355.46 and €11,250.
According to the minister, a separate amount of cash and assets worth over N2tn have also been seized, adding that the assets and cash seized under interim forfeiture totalled $9bn, N126bn, £2.4m and €303,399.
He added that funds awaiting return from foreign jurisdictions totalled $321,316,726.1; £6,900,000 and €11,826.11.