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Compel Delta Govt To Account For N2Trn In 6 Years, Youths Tell Buhari



Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa

Concerned youths from the five oil and gas producing communities of Ijaw, Itsekiri, Urhobo, Isoko and Ndokwa of Delta State, have urged President Muhammadu Buhari to compel the Delta State government to account for over N2trillion collected as 13% derivation fund from 2015 till date.

In a letter to President Buhari, the youths recalled that the communities fought gallantly under the administration of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, which resulted in the establishment of the Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (DESOPADEC).

The letter jointly signed by Prince Perefa Ebimo – Ijaw, Comrade Itse Okorodudu – Itsekiri, Comrade Ogheneovo Akporode – Urbobo, Comrade Obuke Akpojene – Isoko, and Comrade Ossai Odeli – Ndokwa, said it was very sad and disheartening to note that under the two Boards of DESOPADEC put in place by the current Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, contractors have been denied payment.

The letter reads: “Since his assumption of office in 2015, verifiable data from the Federal Ministry of Finance and the office of the Accountant General of the Federation showed that our Governor has collected over two trillion Naira and by simple calculation the five oil and gas producing mandate areas of Ijaw, Itsekiri, Urhobo, Isoko and Ndokwa ought have collected one trillion Naira as 50% of the sum of two trillion Naira but the situation on ground suggest otherwise.

“According to the published National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) data, the yearly Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) disbursements for 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 were N130.12bn, N71.95bn, N111.20bn, N213.63bn, N219.28bn, and N186.83bn respectively, bringing the total for the period to N923.01 billion,” they said.

The youths also noted that according to National Bureau Statistics (NBS) data, the yearly Delta State Internally Generated Revenue for 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, January to June 2020 stood at N40.80bn, N44.06bn, N51.89bn, N58.44bn, N64.68bn, and N30.84bn respectively, bringing the total for the period to N290.71bn.

They said the cumulative six years (2015 – 2020) total for FAAC and IGR amounted to N1,213.72bn, which is over N1.2 trillion.

They also pointed out that BudgIT in its analysis of Delta State in the 2020 revised edition of State of States Report, concluded that the state has over the years, not been successful in translating its oil wealth into a vibrant local economy like its sister state, River state which ranks number 1 in the 2020 States Fiscal Sustainability Index. Oil-rich Delta State ranks 23rd, a poor performance influenced largely by a huge recurrent expenditure appetite.

According to them, the IGR of Delta State appreciated by only 10.68%, from N58.44bn in 2018 to N64.68bn in 2019.

“The BudgIT report further noted that, Delta State is largely dependent on the federal government as the net FAAC allocations for the fiscal year stood at N219.28bn, or 77.22%, of the total N283.96bn available revenue for 2019 fiscal year. The recurrent expenditure stood at N215.75bn in 2019, accounting for 60.08% of its total expenditure, while N143.36bn, or 39.92%, was invested in capital expenditure.

“Despite being the highest recipient in net FAAC allocations in recent years, Delta State is now the third most indebted state in Nigeria with a total debt burden of N253.02bn as of December 2019 and debt per capita of N40,587 per citizen.

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“Delta’s domestic debt burden increased by 10.35%, from N211.95bn in 2014 to N233.89bn in 2019, while its foreign debt profile grew by 158%, from $24.22m in 2014 to $62.53m in 2019 exposing the state to risks from exchange rate volatility.

“Flowing from the above, we are compiled to request your Excellency to order for a probe of the spending of 13% derivation fund coming to Delta State as there no evidence that DESOPADEC is getting its 50% statutory monthly allocation from the State upon receipt of the fund from Federation Account.

“We are therefore, requesting very strongly that the Delta State Governor through State Ministry of Finance publish monthly allocation and audited report of what has being remitted to DESOPADEC in the past five years in three National dailies within the next 14 days as failure to do so will compile us to join forces with other oppressed oil/gas producing people to carry out massive closure of oil wells, flowstations and terminal heads within the five oil/gas mandate areas,” they added.



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