Nigeria spends N165bn on monthly wages- Finance Minister

Solomon Chung, Lagos

Amidst financial difficulty, the Nigerian Federal government spends a whooping sum of 165 billion naira every month to pay salaries and pensions, the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun has said.

The Minister, while giving reasons for the bloated sum said the inability to get more workers on the Integrated Pay Roll System was one of the reasons because without such platform, fraud can easily escape in the process.

She disclosed this in Lagos when the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed hosted the News Papers Proprietors Association of Nigeria.

She however stated that the Ministry has been able to track 33, 000 ghost workers and was working towards having more workers on the IPPISS system.

“After our debt forgiveness and the high price of oil, we were not able to manage what we got. All these did not help our economy. With 90 percent recurrent expenditure as against ten for capital, there is no way an economy would grow.

This government believes that the change was for us as a nation not to do things the same way we have been doing before.

We are in a precarious condition, being a consumer nation; we sell oil and buy every other thing. We have to change that. It is not sustainable and it must stop”, she explained.

She said some of the Ministry’s top objective was to stop wasteful spending, set efficiency as a standard and strengthen the fiscal policies as well as accountability in the system.

The Minister said that once the country invests in power, infrastructures, housing, a lot of jobs would be created.

“If we don’t invest in capital projects, it would be difficult for the economy to be revamped.”

 She cited the Ethiopian example where it achieved 60 percent of the budget in capital expenditure and automatically the economic jumped up.

“We must continue to plug all the leakages systematically and strengthen all weak areas until we achieve what we have set out to achieve.