Finance Minister Kemi Adeosun yesterday said N1.248 trillion had been released for capital projects under the 2017 Budget.
She spoke with State House reporters at the end of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
She was with the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mohammed Bello, Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika and the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina.
She said: “The final update I gave was the level of capital releases till date from 2017 and l gave details of the big four areas and then others. So, power, works and housing got N301.89 billion, defence N151.2 billion, agriculture N119.9 billion, transport N127.9 billion and other ares combined is N545.6 billion. So the total capital budget release for 2017 so far is N1.248,310 trillion.
“We haven’t closed yet. We are confident we will close the year roughly around where we closed last year. We will close around N1.3 trillion mark.
“So, our commitment to infrastructure spending remains very strong. That is what is going to drive growth of the economy. That is what is going to drive jobs.”
Adeosun, who briefed Council on the scorecard of her ministry, also disclosed that the Federal Government has recovered N7.8 billion, $378 million, and 27,800 pounds through whistle blower policy.
She said the government also intends to institutionalise the whistle blower policy in order to properly handle its increasing magnitude.
Stressing that the Ministry got 28 approvals during the period, she said the Federal Government has saved N68 billion on personnel cost in 2017.
She said: “This brings the aggregate savings by the government on personnel cost since 2007 to date to N288 billion.”
According to her, the funds, which is now free for the government to fund capital projects, would have gone unaccounted for.
The savings, she said, were achieved despite increased in personnel, including the employment of 10,000 by the Nigerian Police.
She confirmed that a total of 511 Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) had been captured under the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), with staff count of 607,843.
She said: “As at March 20, 2018 the number of MDAs on IPPIS Payroll is 469 with 316,158 staff count with gross salary of N43,979,383,997.78 and 42 Police Commands and Formations paid on IPPIS Platform in February, 2018 with staff count of 291,685 and gross salary of N22,276,669,257.21.
“Staff of para-military agencies (Nigeria Immigration Service, Nigeria Prison Service and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps) enrolled to date is 100,822 for which a trial payroll of N11,456,278,859.00 have been sent for review and update for April, 2018 payroll.”
The introduction of the IPPIS, she said, had resulted in the reduction of ghost workers, enforcement of compliance with due process on employment of staff in MDAs, and prompt and timely payment of salaries and remittances of third parties payments.