The Federal Government of Nigeria on Tuesday said the 36 state governors in the country kicked against its plan to extend the repayment period of its budget support to state governments from 20 to 30 years.
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed stated this while briefing State House correspondents at the end of the National Economic Council (FNEC) meeting presided over by Vice- President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The minister who was joined by governors Willy Obiano (Anambra), Dapo Abiodun (Ogun) , Abdullahi Sule (Nasarawa) and the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire at the briefing explained that the monthly repayment had reduced from N 252 million to N162 million based on the extension.
According to Mrs. Ahmed, the state governors were still not satisfied with the repayment extension to 30 years.
She said the Federal Government had made the first and second months’ N252 million monthly deductions in September and October based on the 20 years repayment period.
Ahmed further explained that following the outcry of state governors, another repayment schedule plan extending the years to 30 and monthly repayment of N162 million was presented to NEC on Tuesday.
“The budget support facility was initially for 20 years repayment period . And when we made the first deduction in September, the states had complained that the amount deducted which was N252 million was too harsh.
“So since then, the Central Bank of Nigeria, who is the lender has revised the condition to make the repayment period longer. And so the new repayment period is 30 years.
“And this means that the states will be paying N162 million monthly. But again today, the states still were not satisfied with the condition.
“So, we are expecting that the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, the CBN and the states will engage again with the view of having the CBN further revise the condition to reduce the monthly repayment burden,” she said.
The Federal Government had in August said a committee had been put in place to facilitate the recovery of N 614 billion given to 35 states as bailout funds. Each state is expected to pay back the equivalent of N17.5 billion.