ABUJA – The National Economic Council (NEC) on Thursday raised alarm over the dwindling Excess Crude Account (ECA) occasioned by the drop in oil price.
Addressing State House correspondents after the monthly NEC meeting in Abuja, the Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Mrs Adejoke Adefulure, said the Minister of State for Finance, Alhaji Bashir Yuguda, briefed the council on the state of the nation’s excess crude account.
The meeting was presided over by Vice-President Namadi Sambo.
She said Yuguda, who represented the Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, informed the meeting that the excess crude account stood at 4.1 billon dollars.
“The Minister of State for Finance, who represented the Minister of Finance, reported to Council that the excess crude account stands at 4.1 billon dollars.
“The Minister stated that the drop in oil price is affecting the inflow of money in to the excess crude account but the Federal Government is trying hard to stabilize the currency.
“The Accountant General will circulate details of the account to Member.“
She announced that the council approved the need for the Inspector General of Police to enforce the directives for the dismantling of road blocks for revenue collection on the highways across the Federation.
According to her., the council also directed the Federal Ministry of Finance, Federal Inland Revenue Service, Joint Tax Board and the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation to commence the process of amending the Value Added Tax (VAT) Act with emphasis on the review of the VAT rate.
She said the council considered and approved the ‘attaché schedule’ containing the reviewed list of taxes and levies collectable by the three tiers of government for publication by the Joint Tax Board (JTB).
Adefulure stated that the council directed the Ministry of Mining and Solid Development and all the relevant agencies at the state level to work closely to resolve all issues associated with the mining of solid minerals nationwide and make appropriate recommendations to NEC.
She said the council received a presentation on Integrated Test Treat and Larval
Source Management (ITTL) Project for Malaria Elimination in Nigeria, by NEC’s Ad-Hoc Committee.
She said the council acknowledged that Nigerians were in support of efforts by the government to eliminate malaria.
“Council approved as amended but promised to report to Mr. President the challenges of funding the ITTL by states,“ she stated.
On the National Addressing Policy, Adefulure stated that the council received a presentation on the policy by the Minister of Communication Technology.
According to her, the National addressing policy sets out a frame work for how addressing will be developed and implemented in Nigeria.
“The National addressing policy identifies factors that are pertinent to the management and protection of addressing data,“ she said.
She revealed that some state governments had already indicated interest in piloting the addressing standard if developed.
She said the states include Ekiti, Osun, Bayelsa, Gombe, Benue, Lagos, Enugu, Imo, Anambra and FCT.
Others are Kebbi, Kaduna, Jigawa, Niger, Bauchi, Plateau and Nasarawa.(NAN)