… Promises low interest rate
By KELECHI MGBOJI, Warri
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, has raised alarm over Federal Government’s huge recurrent expenditure, which he said takes over 70 per cent of government revenue in salaries to workers in the domestic economy, insisting that it was inimical to the country’s growth and development.
He lamented that a situation where 70 per cent of revenue that accrued to the government every month is used to pay civil servants, political office holders and other employees of government agencies, leaving only 30 per cent of the revenue to cater for the rest of the population, will result in stunted growth and development of the economy.
Speaking on Tuesday on the second day of the on-going retreat of the Capital Market Committee in Warri, Delta State, with the theme ‘On Taking the Market to the Next Level’, the apex bank governor said: “The revenue of government is supposed to be for the 160 million Nigerians. Any economy that uses 70 per of its money for civil servant and 30 per cent for others is unjustifiable.”
Sanusi, who said it was irresponsible of any state government to collect allocation to pay salaries, noted that as the apex bank was working assiduously to ensure stability in the country, “Today that 70 per cent of the revenue of the government goes to salaries and running other government expenses. How can you develop economy when for every one naira you make 70kobo is consumed by civil servants. “You need to fire civil servant. Any society where government spends 70 per cent on its employee leaving 30 per cent for development has a problem.
We have 36 states; we are asking for more states, we have 774 local governments, we asking for more local government. When we total all of that, they have consumed all the resources. Do we need 36 states? “We have state governors whose allocation is not enough to pay salaries of civil servant,” he added. Sanusi, who apparently was also was reacting to the yearnings of operators on the need to reduce interest rate in the economy, said the interest rate will come down, explaining that “I don’t know when.
It is not going to remain at the level it is forever. “It would be recalled that the interest rate, which currently stands at 12.00 per cent, is being reviewed downward to a single digit by operators’ in the capital market, as this will result infund being moved to the money market to return to the equities market by investors,” he explained.