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Buhari Governors want President to share $2.259b excess crude funds

The Zamfara state Governor, Abdulaziz Yari, who also is the chairman of the NGF led the Governors to the State House, Abuja to present their demands to Buhari.

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Muhammadu Buhari play

Muhammadu Buhari

The 36 state Governors under the aegis of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF), have asked President Buhari to share the funds in the Excess Crude Account (ECA) among them.

The Zamfara state Governor, Abdulaziz Yari, who also is the chairman of the NGF led the Governors to the State House, Abuja to present their demands to Buhari.

Yari said the move will help cushion the harsh economic challenges the states are currently facing.

The Excess Crude Account was put in place to save any funds above a set crude oil price benchmark. Reports say the ECA currently has a balance of about $2.259b.

Speaking to newsmen, Yari said “For the short-term, we are looking at a situation whereby our debts that are hanging from 2005 right from Obasanjo’s exit of the Paris Club are paid. There are some money that was not paid before. If it is paid, states that are having difficulties can get money from there.

“We are also looking at loan restructuring, bailout and the ECA. We are asking for an 18-month moratorium before we can start paying, so that we will able to strategise.

“To develop the IGR is not overnight, it is a long-term programme that one has to plan for. Also, our service has exploded and there is nothing we can do about it because people are getting their daily bread from there and we cannot say we are going to cut salaries and wages.”

The Governors also told Buhari that they will also work out ways to increase their Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).

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