The government’s income from VAT and mineral resources reduced.
The federal government, states and local governments on Thursday shared N641.2 billion from the Federation Account for February.
The Accountant-General of the Federation, AGF, Jonah Otunla, made the disclosure in Abuja when he addressed journalists on the outcome of the Federation Account Allocation Committee, FAAC, meeting.
“The distributable statutory revenue for the month is N531.332 billion, which is N27.647 billion more than the N503.685 billion that was shared for the month of January.
“Also distributed is the sum of N7.617 billion refunded by the NNPC to be shared to states and local governments. In addition, the sum of N35.549 billion is proposed for distribution under the SURE-P Programme.
“So the total revenue distributable for the current month, including Value Added Tax (VAT) of N66.801 billion is N641.299 billion,’’ he said.
A breakdown of the distribution showed that the Federal Government received N247.533 billion, representing 52.68 per cent; states, N125.552 billion, representing 26.72 per cent; while local governments received N96.795 billion, amounting to 20.60 per cent.
Mr. Otunla added that N56.384 billion, representing 13 per cent derivation revenue was shared among the oil producing states.
On VAT, the AGF said that the gross revenue collected in February was N66.801 billion as against N82.277 billion distributed in January representing a decrease of N15.476 billion.
He said that the mineral revenue collected for February was N569.136 billion, more than the N439.562 billion realised in January; making a difference of N129.574 billion.
He stated that non-mineral revenue collected during the period under review was N97.609 billion.
The figure he added showed reduction of N3.699 billion from the N101.308 billion that was collected in January.
Mr. Otunla said that N135.413 billion was transferred to the nation’s Excess Crude Account (ECA), thereby bringing the total in the ECA to $3.456 billion.
He said that oil revenue for February was impressive in spite the problems such as shutdown of some terminals either because of pipelines leakage or fire outbreak being encountered in the oil sector.
He said that the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company made an exceptional deposit of N82 billion which he noted helped to boost the revenue for the month under review.
Mr. Otunla said that the other matter discussed at the meeting was the issue of oil subsidy which resulted in a 12-man committee to look into the issue.
He said that the committee consisted of six Accountants-General of states and six state commissioners for finance and was expected to conduct the investigation and submit its report at the next meeting of the committee.
The Chairman of Finance Commissioners Forum, Timothy Odah, said that states advocated for the removal of oil subsidy because it was not benefiting the poor.
He said that the states preferred a situation where the entire revenue would be shared and each tier of government allowed to decide to what extent it would grant subsidy
“Looking at it presently, you will discover that it is not solving the problem it was meant to solve
“It gained support because of the projects and programmes it promised, for the purpose of transportation and power tariffs problems among others.
“However, you discover that the average poor man is suffering despite this programme because they are not truly benefiting from the scheme.
“So it is because of that, that we, the Finance Commissioners Forum passed a resolution at FAAC that a call should be made to President Jonathan to review and reconsider the subsidy programme,’’ he said.
It is not clear if the finance commissioners of the All Progressives Congress, APC, controlled states also supported the subsidy removal. The party had rejected the subsidy removal and recently warned the federal government against removing subsidy.
Mr. Odah noted that the industrially developed states, with a large population and factories, enjoyed the benefit of subsidy unlike in the developing countries.
He said that it was because of this that states called for the subsidy programme to be put to an end, so that each state could use its revenue as it deemed fit for the good of its people.
President Jonathan announced the removal of subsidy on premium motor spirit (PMS) otherwise known as petrol from N65.00 to N141.00 per litre on January1, 2012.
The removal led to widespread nationwide protests.
The protests led to the federal government reducing the pump price N97.00. The fund accrued from the partial withdrawal was used to set up the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) Committee.
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