Dr (Mrs) Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Minister of Finance and Co-ordinating Minister for the Economy’s statement at the Senate Committee hearing
Let us focus on oil finances. What is being said and done here is that it is being made to look as if in this country there has been no accountability.
But that is not the case.
For two steady years, federal allocation after federal allocation committee meetings, the Ministry of Finance chairs a process that reconciles these accounts.
And every single commissioner of finance in this country has a folder that shows exactly what we’ve done. Therefore, the Ministry of Finance is doing its job. It is because of that reconciliation that we came to the amount of $10.8billion.
That is the figure everybody is now talking about. When the Central bank of Nigeria, CBN, mentioned $49.8billion, we were the first to say that we did not think that the figure is correct.
You can ask the CBN governor – he’s right here.
After we had done that work, it was proven that ‘no, $49.8billion is not the amount’
He had to courage to admit and accept that.
It is that $10.8 billion, that is the Ministry of Finance’s process that brought it to light.
Without the steady work we’ve done to account for the resources of this country, we won’t be talking about $10.8 billion. Now the issue comes, where is that money? How is it going to be accounted for?
We have led the process.
We asked NNPC and PPPRA to produce the accounts and they did. They produced the papers, certified and that is why we have been talking about the $10.8 billion. What we have said is that we want an independent audit in addition.
It is precisely because of what the distinguished senator is saying that we want his independent audit.
These are extra-ordinary times and a lot of accusations are being made in this country.
The only way Nigerians are going to be satisfied is to have an independent opinion on these accounts.
Regarding the question put forward by the distinguished committee chairman on the issue of kerosene subsidy, in the budget we’ve submitted, we have not covered kerosene subsidy.