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FG Recovers N49.7bn From Debtors, Says Finance Minister

Ebuka Daniel

The Minister of Finance, Budget and Planning, Zainab Ahmed has disclosed that the Federal Government has recovered N49.7bn out of N5.2tn owed to it by contractors and other third party entities through the Project Lighthouse project.

Ahmed disclosed this at the Executive Intelligence Management Course 14 of the National Institute for Security Studies held in Abuja on Friday. 

The minister said that the project was one of the many initiatives the government through her ministry has implemented to ensure good governance and security in the country.

Recall that the federal government piloted the Project Lighthouse in 2017.

The project was ratified by the Federal Executive in 2019 which gave the Ministry the impetus to enter into phase two of the project. 

She said “This Administration has demonstrated its strong commitment to sustainable development, governance and security, not only through global commitments and statements by His Excellency, Mr. President but also by the allocation of financial resources.

“The security agencies are prioritised in the allocation of our limited revenues and as an example, about 86 percent of the 2021 Supplementary Budget was dedicated to the capital and recurrent expenditure needs of the security agencies to supplement the allocations in the 2021 Amended Budget.

“Several initiatives to promote good governance are also funded through the Federal Budget supplemented with the assistance of development partners.”

She described Project Lighthouses as a data driven artificial intelligence engine that provides the Ministry with an intelligence and profiling platform to aid in policy formulation, implementation and impact assessment.

“It enables the aggregation of data from a variety of sources to give us the capability to develop an intelligent data-driven revenue mobilisation model.

“The second phase of implementation of Project Lighthouse has been approved by the Federal Executive Council and so far, we have been able to aggregate N5.2 trillion worth of debts owed to Government by third parties, of which N49.7 billion of this amount has been recovered,” she added.

Other programmes Zainab highlighted are the Treasury Single Account, Government Integrated Financial Management Information System, TaxPro Max, e-customs, Road Infrastructure Tax Credit Scheme among others. 

She noted that her Ministry will continue to work with relevant stakeholders to ensure that Nigeria a safe and secure environment.

“We recognise there is still much to be done and will continue to work closely with all the relevant stakeholders in Nigeria, including the officers of the Executive Intelligence Management Course 14, who are representative of our brave and valiant security forces, to make Nigeria a safe and secure environment conducive to sustainable development,” Zainab noted.

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