Plateau State Government has said it was using overdraft facilities to finance recurrent activities as revenue continue to dwindle.
The Accountant General of the State Mr. Cyril Tsenyil made the disclosure last Wednesday while presenting the state financial profile for the year January to December 2016 to stakeholders in Jos.
Tsenyil said that what comes in monthly from the Federal Allocation, Internally Generated Revenue, Value Added Taxes and other sources was inadequate to pay salaries and take care of overheads.
According to him, government relied on overdraft, stating that state government took overdraft in addition to bailout and Paris Club refund to clear arrears of workers salaries in December last year.
He said that Plateau has found itself in such precarious situation because of the fall in price crude oil and the loans that previous administrations left for the state government service.
“When the monies come in, first deductions are made right at source at the Federal, then Commercial Banks takes theirs in the form of principal and interest.
“What remains is usually inadequate so we have resorted to collection of overdraft,” he said.
According to him, the state debt profile stood at N109 billion in December 2016, and told the stakeholders that the state government would require over N22 billion as financial interventions to service salary overdraft, payment of gratuity and death benefits.
The Accountant General added that the intervention would also be used for fertilizer subsidy, subsidy on tractorization, placement of new pensioners as well as to sustain payment of salaries.
Mrs Tamwakat Weli, Commissioner for Finance said the state was set to adopt an Efficiency Unit(E- Unit) established by Federal Government scheduled to take off in the first quarter of the year.
Weli said the E-Unit would help government reduce wasteful and inefficient spending as well as create framework for economic future of the state.
The commissioner appreciated Gov. Lalong for endorsing the tax harmonization law, the Treasury Single Account (TSA), public procurement law and proper utilization of the bailout and London Paris debt refund.
She said the prudent utilization of the funds has place the state among top three states in the payments of staff salaries.
Gov. Simon Lalong in his opening remarks reaffirmed the commitment of ensuring good governance to people of the state.
Lalong said that the state government would continue to furnish the people of the state of its financial records for the sake of accountability and transparency.
He called for collective collaboration of stakeholders to move the state to attain greater heights by looking for ways to strengthen the state financial position.
The governor pledged to continue to pay salaries as at when due and would do everything possible not to pay as arrears.
-The Nigerian Standard