The Federal Government is set to release N350 billion being the first tranche for implementation of the capital budget component of the 2017 budget.
Kemi Adeosun, Nigeria’s finance minister made the disclosure Monday in Abuja at the public presentation of the 2017 Appropriation Act.
The number of important roads earmarked for rehabilitation include, the Lagos/Ibadan expressway, Kano/Maiduguri road and Enugu/Port- Harcourt road.
The Federal Government also plans to spend N7 billion for the second Niger Bridge, which connects the East with the rest of the country.
Other roads alloted funds include, Abuja/Abaji/Lokoja road which gets N7.12 billion, while N9.25 billion is to be spent on the Obajana junction to Benin road, N7.5 billion for the Onitsha/Enugu dual carriage way and N7 billion for the construction of the Bodo/Boni road.
Also N3.3 billion was earmarked for the rehabilitation of the Ilorin/Jaba road, N3.5 billion for the dualisation of Odukpaleitu and N1.5 billion for the dualisation of the Kano/Katsina road.
While N2.24 billion was allotted for the dualisation of Suleja/Minna road, N2.3 billion for Gombe/Numan/Yola road and N2.7 billion for Kano/Western by-pass, among others.
Adeosun said that the Federal Government had enough cash available to immediately commence the execution of key projects and initiatives scheduled for the 2017 fiscal year.
“We are ready, we are having a cash-plan meeting very soon and after that, N350 billion will be released as first tranche of capital releases for the 2017 budget,’’ she said.
The Federal Government has a budget of N7.44 trillion which is expected to see N529.34billion channeled to the ministry of works, power and housing. It plans to spend N91.65billion on agriculture, N51.32billion on health while education will attract N142billion.
Also speaking, Sen. Udoma Udo Udoma, minister of budget and national planning, said funding of projects would now be on Project-Based Release System to curb waste of public funds by Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
“The requirement for capital releases was evidence of compliance with the Bureau of Public Procurement Act, Udom said.
Udoma said that henceforth, no MDA was authorised to enter into a foreign denominated contract without the approval of the Ministers of Budget and National Planning, and Finance.
Udoma who promised that government will strengthen its monitoring and evaluation framework also said that the government is worried and concerned about the number of abandoned capital projects scattered throughout the country.
The 2017 budget which is tagged the “Budget of Recovery and Growth,” is supposed to see federal government make massive infrastructure investment as it tries to spend its way out of a recession.
“The ministers are working together to ensure that over time, we concentrate our resources on completing important projects, so that we have maximum impact,’’ he said.
Udoma also said that the Ministry was working with the National Assembly to get the country’s fiscal year adjusted to between January and December.