Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun yesterday informed members of the House of Representatives that federal government spent N64 billion on foreign trips.
The minister, who addressed the lawmakers at plenary on the ongoing sectoral debates on how to diversify the economy, said government was trying to reduce the huge amount of money being spent on foreign trips on government officials.
She revealed that government spent N4 billion yearly on rent, pointing out that they would turn all its agencies that deal on rent to recovery agencies.
The minister disclosed that government inherited N60 billion as a result of fertiliser supplied and were not paid for.
Adeosun lamented that while N165 billion were being spent monthly on personnel cost, N18 billion had been spent on road construction thus far.
She said in view of the dwindling economy, government had started growing the non-oil sector of the economy, adding that the country could not continue relying on oil proceeds.
The minister hinted that over 99.6 percent of what government agencies generate was spent, stressing that what they were doing at the moment was to block unnecessary spending and wastages.
While saying they were trying to control these government agencies to really know how much they generate, Adeosun admitted that they do not know the true size of government revenue.
She wondered why some of the oil companies they pay subsidy were not paying tax to the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS.
On capital projects, the minister assured the lawmakers that they would invest more on power, housing, transport and roads.
Adeosun, however, expressed optimism that investing in capital projects would drive industrialisation and grow the economy.
She further disclosed that government was trying to reduce the counterpart funding to states from 50 percent to 10 percent.
The minister noted that they were cleaning up the pension reform to ensure that as people retire, they get their pension as at when due.