The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN has made some clarifications following allegations by the Senate over allegation of un-remitted 80 per cent of operational surpluses into the Consolidated Revenue Fund ( CRF) in the last five years.
The Deputy Governor, Economic Policy, of the Bank, Dr Kingsley Obiora cleared the air when he declared that 80 per cent of CBN’s operational surpluses, have always been remitted to the CRF on yearly basis.
The Senate had through its Chairman, Committee on Finance , Solomon Olamilekan Adeola, during an interactive session with revenue generating agencies accused the CBN of not remitting its operational surpluses within the last five years.
According to Obiora, the remittance is done in line with the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act and not that of the CBN Act which stipulates 75% remittance. He said, “With all due respect to the Senate and in particular , this committee , the CBN as a law abiding government agency , had not at anytime, defaulted in the remittance of its operational surpluses.
We do this on yearly basis as required by the Fiscal Responsibility Act despite the fact that the CBN Act , requires us , to remit 75% only.” Senator Adeola while raising the allegation had said ” Nigeria wouldn’t have been having problem of inadequate revenue to fund its annual budget if revenue generating agencies, were remitting 80% of their operational surpluses into the CRF as required by the Fiscal Responsibility Act.
“Specifically, the Central Bank of Nigeria which has yearly budget of N2.3trillion, has not remitted any revenue from its operational surpluses into the Consolidated Revenue Fund within the last five years.” The Chairman of the committee however directed the CBN to produce documentary evidence of its remittances within the last five years unfailingly Friday this week.
According to Senator Adeola, the Apex Bank should produce its Audited Account in the last five years as well as its position paper on monetary policy point of view on the 2022 – 2024 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF)and Fiscal Strategy Paper being considered by the committee.
He said, ” He who comes to equity must come with clean hands . Since you have declared before the whole world that CBN has been remitting 80% operational surpluses into CRF, it is necessary that we see the documentary evidence , as that would lay the controversy to rest.
” Let’s have these documents latest by 11:00am on Friday.” Attempts by the committee chairman to drag the Director General of Budget Office, Benjamin Akabueze to confirm or dispute the claims of the CBN however proved abortive as Akabueze said that verification to that effect would be determined by an ongoing process.