Tinubu’s gov’t recovers ₦57 billion debt

It was gathered that the debt was trailed through data collected from over 5,000 debtors spanning more than 93 government agencies.

The Federal Government has reclaimed ₦57 billion from a substantial ₦5.2 trillion debt owed by Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) to different government entities.

As reported by The Nation, Mr Okokon Ekanem Udo, Permanent Secretary of Special Duties at the Federal Ministry of Finance, revealed this information at an Enugu workshop to raise awareness.

During the event’s opening, Ekanem announced that the debts were revealed through data collected from over 5,000 debtors spanning more than 93 government agencies.

Aisha Omar, the Ministry’s Director of Special Projects, represented by the Permanent Secretary, conveyed that the ministry had also received reimbursements from companies that failed to fulfil project obligations despite receiving payment.

Additionally, outstanding debts include credit facilities extended by institutions such as the Bank of Industry and Bank of Agriculture, judgment debts in favour of the government and amounts owed to the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate by insurance companies, among other sources.

Mr Udo mentioned that data from Project Lighthouse showed that numerous companies and individuals owing government agencies were still receiving payments despite failing to meet their obligations.

According to Channels TV, he stated that this occurred because transactions were processed through government platforms like GIFMIS and Treasury Single Account (TSA), where visibility was lacking.

To address this issue, the Federal Ministry of Finance launched Project Lighthouse to gather essential economic and financial data from various agencies that previously didn’t share information. This initiative aims to enhance debt recovery efforts.

Ekanem highlighted that inadequate information sharing and enforcement mechanisms often facilitate revenue losses.

“It may interest you to note that the Ministry, through the consolidation efforts of the Debt Analytics and Reporting Application, has been able to aggregate monumental debts of approximately 5.2 trillion,” he added.

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