Nigeria receives $750M World Bank’s Loan to drive SFTAS Programme
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Dr. Zainab S. Ahmed, disclosed that the World Bank has loan the sum total of USD750 million to support the States Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS) programme through the provision of performance-based grants for which USD700 million has been earmarked. The Minister stated this recently in her office at the inauguration of the National Steering Committee of SFTAS.
Speaking at the event, Ahmed stated that SFTAS was introduced in 2017 by the Federal Government in collaboration with the World Bank to strengthen Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability in the 36 States of the federation including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), adding that, it is aimed at strengthening the desired fiscal reforms at the sub-national level.
Dr. Ahmed however, highlighted the key roles and responsibilities of the Committee to include: reviewing the progress in the implementation of the programme, reviewing the status of disbursements to States, reviewing the status of PCU’s monitoring and evaluation, communication and outreach activities, including the publication of the Annual Performance Assessment (APA) results, reviewing the status of delivery of the capacity building programme across the States by implementing agencies and partners, and providing strategic guidance for the programme and any other activities that would facilitate the implementation of the programme.
The Minister pointed out that the National Steering Committee carries greater responsibility; therefore, all hands must be on deck to ensure its success. She urged them to consider the assignment as a national duty and charged them to ensure that the objectives of the programme were fully achieved within the specified timelines. The Minister further assured them of her Ministry’s support.
Earlier, Mr. Aliyu Ahmed, the Permanent Secretary, (Special Duties), Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, stated that the National Steering Committee (NSC) which occupies a strategic position in the governance structure of the SFTAS programme will strengthened fiscal transparency, help in building trust in government, enhance the monitoring of fiscal risks and facilitate accountability in public resource management, which will significantly reduce the chances of corruption and abuse of resources, thereby increasing the efficient use of public expenditures.
He added that, the Committee is the highest decision making body of the programme, hence its membership is drawn from critical stakeholder institutions of the Federal and State Governments, hoping that, the National Steering Committee would tremendously scale up the pace of the programme implementation.
Also speaking at the event, Yue Man Lee, the World Bank Country Director’s Representative and also the World Bank’s team leader wished the Board members luck. She reiterated the World Bank’s full support to the States for the efficient implementation of the programme for effective results, adding that, 24 out of the 36 States of the federation are participating so far in the programme; she hopes it will cover the remaining States.
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Report By: PRNigeria.com