Abuja - The former Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has dismissed allegations she spent $1 billion out of the Excess Crude Account (ECA) to fund the failed re-election bid of former President Goodluck Jonathan.
Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State made the allegation.
The former minister’s spokesperson, Paul Nwabuikwu, said the allegation was “the kind of ludicrously false statement that has unfortunately become a trademark” of the Governor in his public campaign of falsehood against Okonjo-Iweala.
He said within the last few months, the governor had asked the former to explain all kinds of totally wild and unsubstantiated figures, ranging from $30 billion, $20 billion, $2,1 billion, N720 billion and now $1 billion.
“To say the obvious, the accusations are totally lacking in credibility,” Nwabuikwu said.
He said Oshiomhole’s published comments also contained other falsehoods.
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“For instance, he quoted Dr Okonjo-Iweala as saying that she and the Finance Commissioners of the 36 states approved the spending of $2,1 billion out of the Excess Crude Account, adding that the Commissioners had disowned the statement. This is also a complete distortion.”
Nwabuikwu said the former minister never said the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC) approved spending out of the ECA. Rather as the Commissioners themselves stated, the former Minister of State Finance informed them that former President Jonathan approved the expenditure to end the debilitating fuel queues across the country.
“As Nigerians know, the Finance Ministry under Okonjo-Iweala regularly published details of revenue allocations from the ECA in national media.
So Oshiomhole’s tortured “calculations” based on his “four figure tables”
are mere political numbers conjured to achieve a political purpose.”
Nwabuikwu said Oshiomhole’s latest statement, like earlier ones, laboured to give the impression that the entire FAAC process which involved the Federal Government and the 36 states of the Federation was a personal monopoly of Dr Okonjo-Iweala.
“This is, of course not true. FAAC is a long standing national platform for allocating revenues chaired by the Minister of State Finance. The governor’s insistence on pushing this clearly fictional narrative underscores his desperation,” Nwabuikwu added.
- CAJ News