Ambode says N500 billion bond not just for 2016

Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode. PHOTO: LASG

Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode. PHOTO: LASG

Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode has said that the N500 billion Bond Programme approved by the State House of Assembly was not for the current year.

According to him, though part of it would be utilised in the current year, the Bond was a pool fund that would span over a period of time.

He disclosed that it is only about N60 billion that would be drawn from the pool of N500billion for use in 2016, with the state drawing from the fund in subsequent years as approved by the House.

“Before you can actually even appropriate it in your budget, you need that programme and that programme was what was approved by the House. But in the appropriation of 2016, what is in the Appropriation law for 2016 is just N60billion. So, it’s from this programme that we are pulling out this N60 billion. So, for next year’s budget, if the House approves for instance N80billion as bond, we don’t need to go back to the House again after they have approved that budget, you draw from that issuance programme and take another amount which is approved for 2017 budget.

“If they approve any amount for 2018 budget, you take from that pool of N500billion, which can take the next five to 10 years. So it’s just a lump sum, which you now draw down, based on the authorisation by the House. That is the technical explanation. It’s not as if the State wants to go and take another N500billion, it’s just a requirement by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) so that you follow the procedure on a yearly basis,” Governor Ambode said.

Explaining the modalities of the Bond Programme, Ambode said that the state, since 2007, has had two Bond Issuance Programme, adding that the one recently approved by the Assembly was the third and would run for a period of three to five years.

Assuring that the N60billion Bond Programme approved for the current year would be used to accelerate the aggressive infrastructure development ongoing in the state, he said the funds would be channeled towards the completion of the Ajah Flyover, Abule Egba Flyover, Pen Cinema Flyover, as well as the construction of more lay-bys, bus parks, improve health facilities and the building of more public schools and a host of other infrastructure projects.

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