Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike has berated the former Director General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr Dakuku Peterside for speaking about Rivers economy from the point of ignorance.
The governor wondered why Peterside, with his educational attainment, would say that merely because the budget figures of Lagos and Akwa Ibom states are higher, compared to Rivers’ budget, it means that Rivers economy was performing poorly.
He said if a man, who is that ignorant, refused to be silent but comes to public discourse to display such loose grasp of the subject matter, people would question his academic status.
Wike, therefore, stated that Perterside puts a question mark on his doctoral degree, otherwise, how could he say that the performance of the economy was dependent on budgetary estimates.
“When they asked him about the budget of Rivers State, he said the mere fact that Lagos State budget is very high, the mere fact that Akwa Ibom budget is very high, and Rivers State budget is low, that means the economy is not doing well.
“A PhD holder saying that the performance of an economy is based on the size of a budget. Does that mean that Cross River that had a budget of N1.3trillion has performed more than every other state economy?”
Wike also decried the low level of understanding showed by Peterside when he claimed that there was no governance in Rivers State.
The governor queried Perterside’s understanding of governance, saying that he served in the last administration when all the courts in Rivers State were shut for two years, and they also failed to deliver the Opobo Road to enable Opobo people drive on road to their country home.
“They asked him about governance, he said there is no governance in Rivers State. I agree with him. There was governance when the courts were shut down. You are aware that the courts were shut down for almost two years. There was governance at that time.
“There was governance when there was no road to Opobo. There was governance when they put bill one to rob Rivers State. You award a job of N7billion, in bill one is N4.5billion. Now, there is no governance because bill one has been removed? Now, there is no governance because you can drive to Opobo? Now, there is no governance because you can go to the court to seek for your right?”
Wike also took a swipe on a factional chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who is traditionally cursed, and hardly could write his name, to dare challenge him for criticising the Federal Government’s economic stimulation programmes.
The Rivers State governor asserted that with the level of infrastructure and other inclusive policies of government towards Ahoada communities, nobody would say his administration has failed the Ekpeye people.
Wike enumerated some of the projects delivered, particularly in Ahoada-West to include, the Ibiama-Okarki Road, 10km internal roads in Odiokwu community, water scheme, health centre, and recognition of five first class traditional stools.
The governor said 100percent of the contract sum for the reconstruction of Government Secondary School, Okarki, was released to some of their sons, but they diverted the money.
He, however, promised not to be deterred by their act but to revisit the project and ensure that it was competed.
Wike said it was important that they resolve their problems over the selection and choice of a new Eze Ekpeye Logbo.
He urged them to complete that process within the next two months, and endorse a person who would not sell out Ekpeye’s interest or go to companies to take what was meant for the entire Ekpeye people, and present same to the state government.
Wike also directed the demolition of structures for which compensation has been paid, to enable the contractor commence work on the dualisation of the first phase of the Ahaoda-Omoku Road project.
Inaugurating the 10km internal roads, Sokoto State Governor, Hon. Aminu Tambuwal noted that he was witnessing a success story of infrastructural development in a rural Odiokwu community whose socio-economic life has been revived.
He said that despite the lack of capacity of the Federal Government to deliver good governance, they, the governors, were doing their utmost best, playing their role to keep Nigeria together.
Tambuwal said they were proud of Wike for strengthening the existing relationship between Rivers and Sokoto states.
Walking in the footsteps of Melford Okilo and Shehu Shagari, Tambuwal stated that he was working with Wike to foster national unity, cohesion, survival of their people.
Providing a description of the project, Special Adviser to Governor Wike on Special Projects, Dax Kelly Alabo said the 10km network of internal roads have 20km of drains on both sides.
He assured that the roads, built to last 40 years, would impact positively on the socio-economic dynamics of the community.
This is because the crisscross nature of the roads has made access in and out of the farms easy, he said.
See Fubara’s Victory As God’s Design, Wike Tells Rivers PDP
Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike has described the victory of Hon Siminialayi Fubara at the gubernatorial primary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state as God’s design.
The PDP gubernatorial primary held, last Wednesday, at the Dr. Obi Wali International Conference Centre in Port Harcourt.
Wike, who spoke after Fubara was declared the winner of the primary, said so many people strove to clinch the slot but only one person can emerge.
The governor also declared that with the victory of Fubara, Rivers PDP now has a candidate that will fly its flag in the 2023 governorship election.
“I never knew I’ll be governor when I became governor. You have also heard what the candidate said that he never knew he will become PDP candidate.
“But to the glory of God, he is the candidate of PDP. This is because power comes from God. Whoever God says will be, will be.”
Wike pointed out that when it comes to producing the governor of the state, all tribes need to work together on it because no one particular tribe can do it alone.
He said because his administration has performed credibly well in the state, any candidate that the party presents will easily win in the 2023 general election.
“With the performance of our administration, and with what we have achieved in this state, there is no candidate that PDP will present that will not win election.
“Our campaign focus will be like this, that we made promises to the state to do roads and other projects, ask us, have we done them? Yes, we have.
“We will ask them (other parties), what have you done for Rivers State? Certainly nothing. So, who tells you that any other party can come and win this state? Let no one deceive you about that.”
Wike explained that after the presidential primary, PDP leaders in Rivers State will set up a team that will work to ensure that the party wins the 2023 gubernatorial election.
He expressed optimism that those who believe in the party will be dutiful in working for the candidate to win.
In his acceptance speech, Hon Siminialayi Fubara, the immediate past Accountant General of Rivers State, described his victory as evidence of grace.
He called on all party faithful to support his victory and the new drive to consolidate on the achievements of Wike’s administration.
“It is victory for Fubara. It is victory for the party. It is not just victory for the party, but victory for moving the state forward.
“The purpose of this special event this night is also to consolidate on the achievements, on every side, of this present administration.
“We are going to work together to sustain the work that this administration has already done for us.”
In his opening address, the Chairman of PDP in Rivers State, Amb Desmond Akawor said the party was poised to conduct a peaceful and successful gubernatorial primary.
Akawor explained that the party was delighted to have conducted peaceful congresses in the 319 wards and 23 local government areas of the state, including primaries for state and National Assembly.
Declaring the result of the gubernatorial primary, Chairman of the Electoral Committee, Prof. Walter Mboto, said Hon Siminialayi Fubara, polled a total of 721 votes to emerge PDP candidate for the 2023 governorship election.
He explained that Isaac Kamalu polled 86 votes to emerge second position, while Dax Alabo George Kelly polled 37 votes and Tammy Danagogo polled 36 votes.
Also, he said, Chief West Morgan polled 4 votes, David Briggs 4 votes and Brother Felix Obuah polled 2 votes, while eight votes were voided.
“The delegate list that we have has a total number of delegates expected to vote as 980. Total number of accredited out of this 980, 898 delegates were accredited. The total number of votes cast in this election is 898. The total number of valid votes cast is 890. 8 votes were voided.”
FAAC: FG, States, LGCs Share N656.602bn Revenue
The Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) has shared a total sum of N656.602billion as April 2022 Federation Account Revenue to the Federal Government, states and local government councils.
This was contained in a communiqué issued at the end of a virtual meeting of the FAAC for May 2022.
The N656.602billion total revenue comprised distributable statutory revenue of N461.189billion, Value Added Tax (VAT) revenue of N166.522billion, the sum of N8.891billion being excess bank charges recovered and augmentation of N20billion.
In April 2022, the total deductions for the cost of collection were N29.609billion and the total deductions for transfers and refunds were N147.651billion.
Director (Information, Press and Public Relations), Office of the Accountant General of Federation, HenshawOgubike, said in a statement, yesterday, that the balance in the Excess Crude Account (ECA) was $35.377million.
The communiqué confirmed that from the total distributable revenue of N656.602billion; the Federal Government received N257.611billion, State Governments got N201.256billion and the Local Government Councils received N149.251billion.
The sum of N48.485billion was shared to the relevant states as 13percent derivation revenue.
Gross statutory revenue of N635.037billion was received for the month of April 2022.
This was lower than the N933.304billion received in the previous month by N298.267billion.
From the N461.189billion distributable statutory revenue, the Federal Government received N217.412billion, the State Governments got N110.275billion and the Local Government Councils received N85.017billion.
The sum of N48.485billion was shared with the relevant States as 13percent derivation revenue.
In the month of April 2022, the gross revenue available from the Value Added Tax (VAT) was N178.825billion.
This was lower than the N219.504billion available in the month of March 2022 by N40.679billion.
From the N166.522billion distributable Value Added Tax (VAT) revenue, the Federal Government received N24.978billion, the State Governments got N83.261billion and the Local Government Councils pocketed N58.283billion.
The Federal Government got N4.684billion; the State Governments received N2.376billion and the Local Government Councils pocketed N1.831billion from the N8.891billion Excess Bank Charges recovered.
The N20.00billion augmentation was shared as follows: the Federal Government received N10.536billion, the State Governments got N5.344billion and the Local Government Councils received N4.120billion.
According to the communiqué, in the month of April 2022, Petroleum Profit Tax (PPT) and Excise Duties increased marginally, while Oil and Gas Royalties, Import Duty, Companies Income Tax (CIT) and Value Added Tax (VAT) all recorded significant decreases.
Children’s Day: FG Establishes Family Court In 16 States
Ahead of this year’s International Children’s Day celebration, the Federal Government has established family courts in 16 states to ensure child-friendly justice for children, either as victims or as offenders of violence.
The Minister of Women Affairs, Pauline Tallen who disclosed this at a press briefing on Tuesday noted that the establishment of family courts resulted from the effective advocacy and sensitisation for effective implementation of the Child Rights Law across the country.
According to her, the theme for this year’s celebration is ‘Strengthening Supportive Systems for the Protection of the Nigerian Child; A Wake-Up Call.’
The minister noted that despite efforts by the government and other stakeholders, children were still vulnerable and victims of abduction, ritual killings, rape, child marriage, domestic abuse, and others.
She said, “As a ministry, we are sometimes overwhelmed with these issues and it will seem as if we are not doing enough.
“More worrisome is the recent increase of violence in schools, where children are physically and sexually abused online and offline.
“In the meantime, the ministry, in collaboration with relevant stakeholders, has developed policies and carried out a series of programmes to ensure the safety of children.
“The establishment of family courts in 16 states of the federation is a direct result of the effective and sustained advocacy”.
Tallen also said that to ensure the safety and protection of children, she also reconstituted the technical working group on ending violence against children in the country.
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