By; SUNDAY ODE, Abuja.
The Federal Government on Wednesday said no less than N720 billion has so far been released for capital expenditure in the 2016 budget.
Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed who disclosed this while briefing State House Correspondents on the outcome of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by President Muhmammadu Buhari, said 50 per cent capital expenditure has been disbursed.
She also disclosed that N25 billion has so far been released for the for Social Investment programme of the Federal Government aimed at cushioning the effect of the present economic challenges.
According to her, another N40 billion that is in the process of being released into the account of the programme for which total of N500 billion was budgeted.
‘On the Social Investment Programme what we are doing today is to tell Nigerians that the Programme is starting. We have approval from the steering committee in sum of N150 billion. So far N25 billion has been released into the account and there is another N40 billion that is in the process of being released into the account’
‘We had said implementation will be done in stages as the states are ready for each of the Programme they are added into each of the schemes. The school feeding Programme has started in some states like Kaduna, State of Osun, the federal government is only adding its resources to it. The federal government will handle from primary 1-3 which the states will handle from primary 4-6 the Minister added.
Ahmed explained that the cooks that would be involved in the programme have been selected as well as participating banks, stressing that the only thing that needs to be done including training the persons as well as taking data of the school children have been done.
On the job creation programme of the government, Ahmed said money would only be released when graduates involved in the scheme have resumed and worked for the first month
The minister also disclosed that the 2017 budget preparation was at an advanced stage but would still be extensively reviewed by the Economic Management Team and tabled before the Federal Executive Council for approval before sending if to the National Assembly.
Also at the briefing, Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola said council approved 215 megawatts Kaduna power plant.
He also said that FEC also gave approval for construction of sub-station to evacuate 40 megawatt of power from the Gurara hydro electric power plant phase one to connect into Kaduna which would interconnect to Mamdo transmission substation to strengthen the transmission grid.
By; SUNDAY ODE, Abuja.