Has the Nigerian Government Truly Spent 1.7 Trillion on Capital Investment as Claimed by Osinbajo? YES


While addressing people at the 9th Presidential Quarterly Business Forum, Professor Yemi Osinbajo (who is also Nigeria’s Vice President), claimed that the Federal Government has spent N1.7 trillion in capital investment in two budget years.

“I am convinced that we can crack the jobs problem and we are in the right direction. First, by investing in infrastructure; we are investing more in infrastructure today than any previous governments in our history.

“We have spent so far in two budgets, N1.7 trillion in capital investment – that is the largest in the history of the country despite earning 60 percent less; we are doing far more with far less resources,’’ said the Vice President at the State House Banquet Hall in Abuja.

N1.7 TRILLION IN CAPITAL INVESTMENT IS THE LARGEST IN THE HISTORY OF THE COUNTRY

The vice president said spending N1.7 trillion in capital investment is the largest in the history of the country despite earning 60 percent less.

Since Prof Osinbajo was referring to a two-year expenditure of this current administration, we verified this claim by assessing the budgetary allocation and expenditure of 2016 and 2017. This year (2018) was not included because the budget was only passed a few months ago and technically, has not been spent yet.

According to the Budget Office of the Federation, the 2016 budget, as approved by President Buhari has an aggregate expenditure of N6,060,677,358,227 (N6 trillion) out of which N1, 587,598,122,031 (N1 trillion) was projected as capital expenditure but the total release for capital projects in 2016, according to the Accountant General, was N1,219,471,747,443 (N1.2 trillion) which translates to only 20% of the total budget size was spent on Capital Projects. Here’s a more visual way to look at this:

In 2017, a total expenditure of N7.44 trillion was passed by the National Assembly, out of which N2.99 trillion was for earmarked for non-debt recurrent spending, while N2.36 trillion was budgeted for capital expenditure, the figure which represents 31% of the entire budget.

According to official documents from the office of the accountant general, out of the N2.36 budgeted for capital expenditure in the 2017 budget, a total of N1.6 trillion was released to Ministries, Departments and Agencies for financing capital projects in the 2017 federal budget.

Going by available data on capital releases for 2016 and 2017, A total of N2.8 trillion has been spent on capital projects by the current government, a figure which is more than the N1.7 trillion quoted by the vice president, so the claim that this government have spent so far in two budgets, N1.7 trillion in capital investment is TRUE.

A previous fact check had also shown that the latter part of Mr Osinbajo’s claim that the capital release “is the largest in the history of the country” is also true if the actual figures (N1.2 trillion in 2016 and N1.6 trillion in 2017) are taken in real value. In no previous year was up to N1 trillion actually released for capital projects in a budget year!

Akintunde Babatunde is a program officer with the Premium Times Center for Investigative Journalism. A dedicated researcher, channeling his skills towards the unveiling of political propaganda and demystifying the secrecy associated with government projects. A diligent and hardworking intellectual, he holds a bachelor’s degree in educational management and mathematics.