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Okonjo-Iweala alleges smear campaign over subsidies

08 July 2015, 17:50Augustine Osayande

Abuja - Former Minister of Finance, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has alleged a campaign to discredit her as the furore around the issue of payments for petrol subsidies continued.

Her spokesperson, Paul Nwabuikwu, said there was an “excessive” attempt to batter the former minister name in an attempt to damage her reputation.

“It is clear as I said in my previous statement that the motive is malicious and very political and therefore will not succeed. If monies were used to pay for subsidies for the Nigerian people and duly approved, why is Okonjo-Iweala’s name being battered in this way,” Nwabuikwu said.

Okonjo-Iwela insisted that that the Excess Crude Account (ECA) was used for paying for petroleum subsidies for the Nigerian people and was approved by then President Goodluck Jonathan.

Her spokesperson said there was no misrepresentation in her earlier statement.

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“We thank the Finance Commissioners for their clarification on the use of the Excess Crude Account (ECA) and for acknowledging that this is not an Okonjo-Iweala issue. The statement clearly shows that Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC) is a statutory body which is chaired by the Honorable Minister of State for Finance in which all the states are represented said Nwabuikwu.

He continued, “Payments made were used for paying for petroleum subsidies for the Nigerian people and were approved by Mr President. Therefore there is no question of mismanaging any resources here.”

Okonjo-Iweala’s spokesman added the former minister never said FAAC approved such expenditures.

“What she said was that all these expenditures were discussed at FAAC meetings attended by Finance Commissioners from the 36 states. It is therefore clear that there was no misrepresentation by Dr. Okonjo-Iweala.”

Okonjo-Iweala and some governors, particularly Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State, have previously clashed over the management of the ECA.

- CAJ News


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