13% Derivation: Gov Obaseki show us projects like Wike or tell us the whereabouts of the money
By Chris Osa Uhunmwangho
Just recently Governor Nyesom Wike was out on channels television thanking President Buhari who was represented by the attorney general of the federation for paying the Niger Delta states monies that have been owed since 1999.
Wike during a commissioning event at the inauguration of the Nabo Graham Douglas campus of the Nigerian Law School in Rumueme, Port Harcourt yesterday Friday 18th November 2022 while giving his speech said “Let me say it for the first time, so many people asked me: ‘where is he getting this money’? Let me say it. I want to through the attorney-general of the Federation thank Mr President,” he said.
“Monies that were not paid to the Niger Delta states since 1999, the 13 percent derivation money that were not paid, Mr President approved and paid all of us from the Niger Delta states.
“And for me, it would be unfair not to tell the public, It is not from FAAC money, It is the money that is supposed to be for Rivers, Delta, Akwa Ibom, Edo, and Bayelsa states.
“Yesterday, we commissioned the ninth flyover, in December, we will commission the 10th flyover, by February next year, we will commission 11th and 12 flyovers.“So I want to sincerely from my heart and on behalf of the government and people of the state, thank Mr President for this, because as an opposition government, he could have said ‘don’t pay’. You can’t do anything
“Since 1999, the money have not been paid. Did we do anything? So, I want to sincerely thank him, as said by Wike.
The Rivers governor’s recent statement and revelations has however raised concerns over the poor state of infrastructure in Edo state considering the extent of work going on in Rivers state with the money that was also paid to Edo state.
Edo state government after about six years in office has failed to achieve any of his electoral campaign promises, from the gele gele seaport to the industrial park. It has been reported severally that Edo has signed countless MOU’s with various firms abroad and till date none of those MOU’s has been effective to the development of the state.
The problem is that there are fundamental issues that the Government should have tended to with all urgency and responsiveness, for instance the Benin-sapele road for the second time this year was blocked by the youths of the community due to its deplorable state, for a state that do not have even one fly over or meaningful projects ongoing but have received such huge amount of money from the federal government just like his Rivers state counterpart, should have at least carry out a palliative to enable that road motor able after-all Rivers state government with that same money did not only construct a federal road (Aba road) in Rivers state but went further and added a fly over to decongest the road.
Our fear and concern is not that Edo state government will not be held accountable for these money in the near future but that it is very unfortunate Edo state has suffered yet another years of developmental set back in this modern age of rapid development, now my question is where exactly is all this money going to?
From the supposed 100% increase in the state internally generated revenue to the annual revenue meant for the non functional local governments councils in Edo state, to the annual security votes from the federal government. How many more that we do not know of but pray and hope God continue to use men like Wike to reveal the truth to us
It is unfortunate that while other Niger Delta states has continued to enjoy the dividends of being from the Niger Delta region, Edo state has only been rewarded with further impoverishment, lack of infrastructural development, insecurity, highest rate of inflation and very poor state of living
Our question is where is all the money going? It is unfortunate that Edo state government has achieved nothing even with the high inflow of money from the federal government
After many years now, Edo state is yet to have a functional local government council and we all understand the importance of an effective local government to ensure government connects to the grassroots, of course that does not in any way hinder the annual financial benefit of local government councils in the state. Edo state government has deliberately refused to conduct local government elections in order to continue diverting the money meant for the development of our local governments for other personal use, otherwise what exactly has Edo state government done with the funds meant to run the 18 local governments of the state aside payment of council staffers
Edo people must never forget who their true enemy is, a government that have refused to work for the people with their own money.
It gladdens my heart that governor Wike is a man of truth and that is why we will continue to uncover and bring to the general public benefits of being a member of the oil producing states in Nigeria that is been used and diverted for other personal benefits by Edo state government