We Inherited Debt Higher Than Our 2016 Budget- Agric Minister | Independent Newspapers Limited
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We Inherited Debt Higher Than Our 2016 Budget- Agric Minister

Nigeria's Minister of Agriculture, Ogbeh
Posted: Oct 10, 2016 at 6:16 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, on Monday said his ministry is bogged down by a mountain of debt it inherited, which is now slowing down activities at a time the Federal Government is working seriously towards diversifying the economy away from oil.

Ogbeh, who received members of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development, led by its Chairman, Sen. Adamu Abdullahi, on an oversight visit, lamented he ministry’s inability to execute the wet season GES, because of a N67 billion accrued debt “we met on ground.”

Moreso, he continued, “the N67 billion GES debt we inherited alone is higher than the entire 2016 budget allocation to the Ministry of Agric.”

As if this was not enough challenge, he said implementation of the 2016 budget “has been slowed down by the untimely release of funds and the long procurement process as required by law.”

Agriculture, he reminded the visitors, “is a time-sensitive business and late intervention in inputs to farmers is counter-productive and we are not happy.

“Having missed the wet season farming GES, we are now looking to implementing the dry season intervention once the rain stops.

“Another challenge is inadequate budget provision to execute Agric projects and the projects the Agric ministry is expected to execute,” he stressed, according to a series of tweets through the ministry’s official twitter handle.